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ANNUAL REPORT 


OF THE 


BOARD OF REGENTS 


OF THE 


SMITHSONIAN INSTITUTION, 


SHOWING 


THE OPERATIONS, EXPENDITURES, AND CONDITION 
OF THE INSTITUTION 


FOR THE 
YEAR ENDING JUNE 30, 1897. 


Bec) RE 


ies NATIONAL MUSEUM. 
Part: £6 


WASHINGTON: 
GOVERNMENT PRINTING OFFICE. 


7902. 


AN ACT PROVIDING FOR THE PUBLIC PRINTING AND BINDING, AND THE 
DISTRIBUTION OF PUBLIC DOCUMENTS. 


Approved January 12, 1895. 


“Of the Report of the Smithsonian Institution, ten thousand copies; one thousand 
copies for the Senate, two thousand for the House, five thousand for distribution by 
the Smithsonian Institution, and two thousand for distribution by the National 
Museum.”’ 


It 


A MEMORIAL 


OF 


GEORGE BROWN GOODE, 


TOGETHER WITH 


A SPE ECITON OF HIS PAPERS 


ON 


MUSEUMS 


AND ON THE 


HISTORY OF SCIENCE IN AMERICA. 


WASHINGTON: 
GOVERNMENT PRINTING OFFICE. 


LOO1, 


INGE ROW CLT ON. 


The influence of Doctor George Brown Goode on the growth and 
character of the United States National Museum was profound, and it 
extended to museum development in all parts of the world. It is 
desirable that an account of his life and services should appear, together 
with reprints of his valuable papers on American science and public 
museums, as well as several on related subjects that have never been 
published, in this portion of the Smithsonian report devoted to the work 
of the National Museum. Most of these papers appeared originally in 
publications not easily accessible to students, and all reprints have long 
since been distributed. 


GEORGE BROWN GOODE. 


Every student of nature the world over has profited by the work of 
Doctor Goode. Everyone interested in the advancement of science and 
in the development of museums as the graphic representatives of history 
and science has been and will be encouraged and assisted because he lived 
and worked. Every person can emulate his example of right living and 
honest service with gain individually and as a member of the community 
and of the body politic, and every Virginian can point with pride to the 
fact that Doctor Goode’s ancestors were from that historic State. 

Personally I knew him as the man of science, the museum adminis- 
trator, the patriot, the valued adviser, and the loyal friend. Two years 
have passed since his death, and I feel the personal and public loss more 
and more. No one has come to take his place in many of the fields of 
his activity. Science, and particularly Government scientific institutions, 
will long miss the wholesome influence that he exerted on the minds of 
scientific and public men. But all that could be said by me has been 
spoken by those whose tributes follow. We loved the man, and we cherish 
his memory in secret thought and honor it in the written words of this 
memorial volume. 

CHARLES D. WALCOTT. 
v 


oS et . > ry 


CONTENTS. 


MEMORIAL MEETING. 


Page 
SEDC EIGET SEU a ache ree cit Peel A 2a gba PU 3 
SLI EE NTT 8 cs BR cat Uo Mr nh ce ee 4 
Introductory remarks. By Gardiner Greene Hubbard...................... 5 
Opening Address. By Gammel: Pierpont Langley... fo... 0.2 Ses eke. a 
Goode as a historian and citizen. By William Lyne Wilson ................ 13 
Goode asa naturalist. By Henry Fairfield Osborn. ....-2.....5.....0..-00. 17 
Goode’s activities in relation to American science, By William Healey Dall. 25 
Resolutions and messaves Of syimoathy: ..jcovicc cc ov 10 bbs does dedecce cnet oc. 33 
Memoir of George Brown Goode. By Samuel Pierpont Langley ............ 39 
PAPERS BY GEORGE BROWN GOODE. 

Musciin-bastory and Musenins of History ..... icc. osce esac ceaccescdess sets 63 
ihe Genesis of the United States National Museum ............2.c..0ce. ese 83 
The Principles of Museum Administration ........... Sele ait ere irs at ie 193 
Pee RMSeMINS Ol CCF MEGER 2 c0 blocs sna Dae oh soe sinly hac oheweceh cnbinnee. 241 
The Origin of the National Scientific and Educational Institutions of the 

"SUSE YS Chee STS RTS Ae Re ce a no ai Se yn 263 
mie Merimnames of Natural History in America. 9.00.3. 00.. fess beni ea ceation 357 
ewer imines On Aten Can SCIeNCE)... cals sms oe uae skool sues lee eieee 407 
The First National Scientific Congress (Washington, April, 1844) and its Con- 

nection with the Organization of the American Association ............... 467 


The Published Writings of George Brown Goode. By Randolph Iltyd Geare. 479 


VII 


19. 
20. 


List OF PLATES: 


Facing page. 
FRONTISPIECE. George Brown Goode (1857-1896), assistant secretary of the 


Smithsonian Institution. From a photograph by T. W. Smillie........ 


. John James Abert (1787-1863), chief of U. S. Topographical Engineers. 


Brom a ctechenoraviay: My [. BUELTE. 25.6 afew c)sre nine oe sieiois sore dele 8 


. Louis Agassiz (1807-1873), naturalist. Froma steel engraving of a painting. 
. John James Audubon (1780-1851), naturalist. From a photograph ofa 


OR Gk pele nya Me TOE A ROO a ets a. wih jaja oth le evi ion toe w ooeue ete oicann aio ctoee 


. Don Felix d’Azara (1746-1811), naturalist. From an engraving by Lizars. 
. Alexander Dallas Bache (1806-1867), superintendent U. S. Coast Survey. 


CESecatine co gOUTOEO PT CNY Uh Oly he OA UIAELIND. «haa 5) 3) <b cit ah ni o's: oc 090) clan %, sbalnin «'avq.5S udlolets 


. Spencer Fullerton Baird (1823-1887), secretary of the Smithsonian Insti- 


tution, *Hrom a photograpl by -T. W.. Siiillie . 0. ..20% <r as op ene e ewe 


. Joel Barlow (1754-1812), author of the Columbiad. From an engraving 


by ne Sica ot Apatite: Dy ODER ITO acc) c cee e-s/swis eviews e's 5 ss 


. Frederick Augustus Porter Barnard (1809-1889), president of Columbia 


College, New York. Froman engraving by E. G. Williams and Brother. 


. John Gross Barnard (1815-1882), army engineer. From an engraving by 


IN 5 TEs TRUS TR CE ee ks oe et arte ea os run olen ter Ri le Re A mol oe 


. Benjamin Smith Barton (1766-1815), physician and naturalist. From an 


SMR Leet MU Tava GOREN Geert geley ol hate sie’ asks! ayei Mole: Pievsieys, nie areicuuim ofeimuessgakce esas 


. William Bartram (1739-1823), botanist. From an engraving by T. B. 


Wi elchion dmparitiie py (Co We PEAle oe or cle so aici s ass a(ce le cas adie «myers 


. Nathaniel Bowditch (1773-1824), mathematician, From an engraving by 


J. Gross of a drawing by J. B. Longacre of the bust by Frazee.......... 


. Mathew Carey (1760-1839), author. From an engraving by Samuel Sar- 


EAI OUI PACE” Dy [OHM NCAMIC cs rrclecis oie a'erare vows Sine ax cin ctera’ate = uta ei cis 


. Samuel de Champlain (1567-1635), French explorer. From an engraving 


by J. A. O’Neill of a painting by Hamel of the Moncornet portrait. ... 


. Pierre Francois Xavier de Charlevoix (1682-1761), French explorer. From 


aivenoravanie Dy, poAe ONCML : 5c. tan o[S ap» 2,0 claves cyyee Gime sae’ es 


. De Witt Clinton (1769-1828), chief promoter of the Erie Canal. From an 


engraving by A. B. Durand of a painting by Ingham................... 


. George Hammell Cook (1818-1889), state geologist of New Jersey. From 


SUMP Tek NEM stein apa Wie 0:6 «iy, Eye cre ee ars yeYeo es 2 mnayes Ske Sunjmeleyeis eran «om ovaral wanes 


. Darius Nash Couch (1822-1897), army explorer. From an engraving by 


ee AES TAECLE Ot AM OIOLO SLADE ciory cial gievatbic.e’> ela a/ewicin letra ncg.aem tis! s (cer ale; tynieie a 
Charles Patrick Daly (1816-1899), geographer. From a photograph..... 
James Dwight Dana (1813-1895), geologist. From an engraving by 

PEs PRSEINUE LYRR eagreecte) oni ern Sess ora/2In ci nlals)« sisiate, « Fm b% nici nipus,eT0'E sala He o-0/0 


102 
106 
110 
I1t4 
118 
122 
126 
130 


134 
138 


142 


t The illustrations that accompany this volume are arranged alphabetically. 


Ix 


21. 


51. 
52. 


. Eben Norton Horsford (1818-1893), chemist. From an engraving 
. David Hosack (1769-1835), botanist. From an engraving by A. B. Durand 


Lust of Plates. 


Facing page. 


Charles Henry Davis (1807-1877), naval explorer. From an engraving 
by, Ave Hes Ratehicne sre 5'eia: =, Susie ard Setetbtan) 38.6 ted eget eda te ner ice Pe ete ene ae cae 


. Edwin Hamilton Davis (1811-1888), ethnologist. From a copy of a 


g0)SN0) Corey 0) | Re AREAS Micro H OH GGC DUA mode saUaboaddasenbecdanes 


3. John William Draper (1811-1882), physicist. From an engraving by 


George H. Perine « . «.:2)5ti\ Saray eleventere see exercts.ar eet ate 


. Peter Stephen Duponceau (1760-1844), philologist. From a lithograph. . 
. Timothy Dwight (1752-1817), president of Yale College. From an 


enpraving® by Mreeniain a: cp wieteccs Sie eee ee en ole teen eee ete ee 


. James Buchanan Eads (1820-1887), civil engineer. From an engraving 


by AL Ee Ritchie «oe 2ln i G/sdGele Sistas Seen a cutee vie ee 


. Amos Eaton (1776-1842), botanist. From an engraving by A. H. Ritchie. 
28. 


Andrew Ellicott (1758-1820), astronomer and civil engineer. From a 
photograph of a painting 


. George William Featherstonhaugh (1780-1866), explorer and geologist. 


Front a photosraph ss <.5.5.. 25 = deaeiote a oles keene wate an oa ee 


. William Ferrell (1817-1891), meteorologist. From a photograph ....... 
. John Reinhold (1729-1798) and John George (1754-1794) Forster, natu- 


ralists. From an engraving by D. Berger 


. Benjamin Franklin (1706-1790), scientist. From an etching by Albert 


o; ss) 0,2 aa 010 6(e v6, ee leis, 5,9" s § Se) abalial aie 


. John Charles Frémont (1813-1890), army explorer, From an engraving 


by T. Knight of a photograph 


© 0) @) 6,6 ae! ieie)me (eves wusile © Ole «60 a © ee) 86% sae oldie in 


. George Gibbs (1815-1873), ethnologist. From a photograph............ 
. James Melville Gilliss (1811-1865), astronomer. From a photograph.... 
. Augustus Addison Gould (1805-1866), conchologist. From an engraving 


by Wright Smith 


. Asa Gray (1810-1888), botanist. From a wood engraving by G. Kruell.. 
. Jacob Green (1790-1841), chemist. From an engraving by J. Sartain of 


a painting by H. Bridgport 


. Arnold Guyot (1807-1884), geographer. From a photograph ........... 
. Stephen Hales (1677-1761), botanist. From a steel engraving 
. Charles Frederic Hartt (1840-1878), naturalist and explorer. From a 


wood cut engraving of a photograph 


. Ferdinand Rudolph Hassler (1770-1843), first superintendent of the U.S. 


Coast Survey. From a photograph of a painting 


. Isaac Israel Hayes (1832-1881), Arctic explorer. From an engraving by 


Jackman 


. Joseph Henry (1799-1878), first secretary of the Smithsonian Institution. . 
. Edward Hitchcock (1793-1864), geologist. From a photograph of a 


painting 


of a painting by Thomas Sully 


8's) 0 0 0 5 ole 0c eo. n 0) aleve! se ote imi siw oe © Onl alee) wie) aiele)e dels 


. Andrew Atkinson Humphreys (1810-1883), army engineer. From an 


engraving by A. H. Ritchie 


@ 6 am 6 ela le vie ele mise eo) 6 eel sks étule Sintale a) aiatuPelein se) o\nl 


. David Humphreys (1752-1818), poet and diplomatist. From an engraving 


m6 (6 80 eee) 6 i) 0) e) elie) ec) x wTe)\e. 6) np 60 \.6 0 © 


by G. Parker of a painting by Gilbert Stuart 


. Elisha Kent Kane (1820-1857), Arctic explorer. From an engraving by 


T. B. Welch of a daguerreotype portrait by Brady..................... 
Benjamin Henry Latrobe (1767-1820), civilengineer. From a lithograph. 
Isaac Lea (1792-1886), conchologist. From an etching by S. J. Ferris.... 


146 
150 


154 
158 


162 


166 
170 


174 


178 
182 


186 
190 
196 
200 


204 


208 
212 


216 
220 
224 
228 


232 


236 
240 


244 
248 


252 
256 
260 
266 


270 
274 


53. 


54. 
55- 


56. 
57- 
59. 
59. 
60. 


61. 
62. 


63. 
64. 


65. 
66. 
67. 
68. 
69. 
70. 
ik 
72. 
73- 
74. 
75: 
76. 
77: 


78. 
79- 


80. 
81. 


: 82. 


List of Plates. 


ancl 


Facing page. 


Meriwether Lewis (1774-1809), explorer. From an engraving by Strick- 
EET GU ca Shi CSS COS OPI Ieuan ae se re eo 
James Harvey Linsley (1787-1843), naturalist. From a steel engraving. . 
Stephen Harriman Long (1784-1864), army explorer. From an engraving 
by J.C Butire of a-dapuerrcotype portrait... 02... es. sce cce cscs anaes 
William Maclure (1763-1840), geologist. From an engraving of a painting 
eae UO Ht aS A bys AN reer the apn wt ae ie cv aes hoe aCe kee tks eet. 
Matthew Fontaine Maury (1806-1873), geographer. From an engraving 
PigneecOn ens AGL iio: ater tn <0 ae ee itis te Re ete cianach eR ake does 
Frangois André Michaux (1770-1855), botanist. From an engraving by 
Hee Mallet a painting by Rembrandt Peale .. 52.0. 6...0.60 aces ese 
Ormsby MacKnight Mitchel (1809-1862), astronomer. From an engraving 
nt CRN ET SSSA i oon hen Be pac ae ea 
Samuel Latham Mitchill (1764-1831), ‘‘Nestor of American Science,”’ 
Brom an-enerayvine of a.painting by H) Inman: ..5. 2.0.2... oe: sec usee 
Samuel George Morton (1799-1851), physician. From an engraving..... 
Albert James Myer (1827-1880), chief signal officer, U.S. A. From an 
Sera vine Ky WML WEBI fais ci sc esnlcd, (es nial «%<..\bx ee sete suc died 
John Strong Newberry (1822-1892), geologist. From a photograph...... 
Eliphalet Nott (1773-1866), president of Union College. From an engrav- 
ing by ALB. Durand of a painting by “Ames... << 0.4.2. esccnec cles us. 
Thomas Nuttall (1786-1859), naturalist. From an engraving by Thom- 


Denison Olmsted (1791-1859), physicist. From an engraving by A. H. 
Ji GI US casei Ie SBR saclay eee ae 
John Grubb Parke (1827-1900), army explorer. From an engraving by 
FAN TLS OSS SIMD Ore ae, A A iy PR a 
Charles Willson Peale (1741-1827), artist. From a painting by himself. . 
Rembrandt Peale (1778-1860), artist. From a painting by Thomas Sully. 
Benjamin Peirce (1809-1880), mathematician. From a photograph ...... 
Timothy Pickering (1745-1829), statesman. From an engraving by ‘I. B. 
Welctola patmbine by Gilbert Stuart. ois. 52.2. ese hk aca cheese 
Zebulon Montgomery Pike (1779-1813), army explorer. From an engrav- 
ELAS VU SCVaT Tie gf el Se le en a 
Joel Roberts Poinsett (1779-1851), statesman. From an engraving by 


[ode DOSES a ariraiae SO a tet Gag eae, ae eee ea era 
Joseph Priestley (1773-1804), chemist. From an engraving by W. Holl of 
Bgpaleleit et yp Gull DEL ENOt ARE: Seis Serle ci iareic co. 2 oo cia Madnick Shae 
Samuel Purchas (1577-1628), author of ‘‘ Purchas, his pilgrimage.’’ From 
SNA S Te Ge Msc Teao, 2ed & 19) Sa Oo. 1-2 eae a 


Constantine Samuel Rafinesque (1784-1842), naturalist. From a wood 
cuLreproduction of a steel engraving. ©. 6. occ .' coe cee nie ced dedecses eo. 
William C. Redfield (1789-1857), meteorologist. From an engraving by 
Beg ele asthe nah one Sal Yay MBS Mc tated ceafionctsiclh is Shsbusertotccat otek aed, 
Charles Valentine Riley (1843-1895), entomologist. From a photograph. 
David Rittenhouse (1732-1796), astronomer. From an engraving by J. B. 
PoMegere obapaimtine byoG WePeale.< . deals sin sccec<cusd cceseaic Gaonh 
John Rodgers (1812-1882), naval explorer. From an engraving by A. H. 
Pt Pee ae reer eto ee eR eral) ala mp op ba te Oe 
Henry Darwin Rogers (1808-1866), geologist. From an engraving by 
SESE ETE EI S01 ea, rpc ESCA Ie ge 
William Barton Rogers (1804-1882), founder of Massachusetts Institute of 
Technology. From an engraving by H. W. Smith.................... 


278 
282 


286 
290 
294 
298 
302 


306 
310 


314 
318 


XII List of Plates. 


83 


84. 


85. 
86. 


87. 


88. 


> 


gl. 
92. 
93- 


94. 
95. 


96. 
97- 


98. 


99. 


100. 
IOI. 
102. 
103. 
104. 
105. 


106. 
107. 


ro8. 


T09. 


89. 
go. 


Facing page. 


. Thomas Say (1787-1834), naturalist. From an engraving by Hoppner 
Meyer of a painting by Wood .........---seeee eee eee ete eee teen ees 
Henry Rowe Schoolcraft (1793-1864), naturalist and explorer. From an 
engraving by Illman and Sons... ...... + e+ eeeee seen eee eect cere teens 
Pietro Angelo Secchi (1818-1878), astronomer. From a wood cut...... 
Benjamin Silliman (1779-1864), chemist. From a mezzotint by P. N. 
Whelpley .: 0.2.5.0 cc csc cece combs amen cama sis = nim gman eee ve=er etisiats 
Sir Hans Sloane (1660-1752), founder of British Museum. From a steel 
GH TAVIDG  < cs-m sicicje oe 4 nveie o.arnin Hime slsieicrs he mista oteerei nee Retell ee 
James Edward Smith (1759-1828), botanical writer. From a photograph 
Of AN ENGTAVING 2.0... cece teeters eee coe ee es seeeneecnanesesesesses 
John Smith (1579-1632), English explorer. From an engraving ....... 
Jakob Steendam (1616-1662), poet and naturalist. From a lithograph of 
a steel engraving .....-..000secceecees sts rege same eee ise earee a aieeeinls 
Isaac Ingalls Stevens (1818-1862), army explorer. From an engraving 
by J.C. Buttre oo... nce oe cia we werere = eieeels prea saree ainsi ete 
Isaiah Thomas (1749-1831), founder of the Antiquarian Society in 
Worcester, Mass. From an engraving by J. R. Smith................ 
Benjamin Thompson, Count Rumford (1753-1814), chemist and physi- 
cist. From an engraving by T. Miiller.............-.-- sees ee eeeeeee 
John Torrey (1796-1873), botanist. From a lithograph...............- 
John Tradescant (1608-1662), traveler and naturalist. From a reproduc- 
tion of aniold ‘engraving... a..2 ccs see as oe eee ee eens lee rear 
Gerard Troost (1776-1850), mineralogist and geologist. From a steel 
QMO TA VINE 55 oc Ses she nsene Boum # Speed eae Ie oes eee eater eae 
William Petit Trowbridge (1828-1892), civil and mechanical engineer. 
From a photograph... ......:sceescee dence esc cee scene cereserncacecs 
Stephen Van Rensselaer (1765-1839), founder of the Van Rensselaer 
Polytechnic Institute. From an engraving by G. Parker of a minia- 
ture by C: Braset 6. 0. 2.0/0 ecaie vie cteini ett aie aie) oi =i) aie) wate iote etme ener 
Garcilaso de la Vega (1539-1616), Peruvian historian. From an early 
engraving by Carmona... 2.252. ceens «20 0)ee em isisleicie an iierslo sible niatals ielere 
Benjamin Waterhouse (1754-1846), physician. From an engraving by 
Re REEVES srarc ssi tie. 0. dchrelt wie iais wo eye siete: s) © opebels @irpciste)aketstota ters i afetetst=leiatelat=]- Voter 
Francis Wayland (1796-1865), president of Brown University. From an 
enpraving by. J. C. Buttre « «3.0.2 2.27 os sein ee vie bien ieee tener 
David Ames Wells (1828-1898), political economist. From an engraving 
by EL; WY Srnrttla © 5. oc.5.< 5 aha 008 oct kus. 0 @ wrote ereye. eats ale tetera Ree eee eee 
William Dwight Whitney (1827-1894), philologist. From an engraving 
by J. GC. Bettre oc sis oa ese thse caters ayoymie ie temo: ote ye emt eens eel eee 
Charles Wilkes (1798-1877), naval explorer. From an engraving by 
INP RACH £ 25,52 covela o-0i 010 ore reheusieoleteioneleseieloheretels ofokohen olen telel=Dieteletntaet ast ete 
Hugh Williamson (1735-1819), promoter of scientific enterprises. From 
an etching by Albert Rosenthal of a painting by J. Trumbull ......... 
Alexander Wilson (1766-1813), ornithologist. From an old engraving. . 
Caspar Wistar (1761-1818), professor of anatomy. From an engraving 
by J.B Longacre ofa painting by iB. OS® 2.7 cto sice teem eee 
Jeffries Wyman (1814-1874), comparative anatomist. From an engrav- 
ine by Iy.'S; Pundersoms sco cec 2c ch nove crete ieiete eels eteietebelene ere ete ek ete ene 
Edward Livingston Youmans (1821-1887), founder of Popular Science 
Monthly. From an engraving by C. Schlecht.............. aunt sss 


398 


4o2 
406 


410 
414 


418 
422 


426 
430 
434 


438 
442 


446 
450 


454 


458 
462 
466 
470 
474 
478 
482 


486 
490 


494 
498 


500 


Renee) Ra 


OF THE 


MEETING HELD IN COMMEMORATION OF THE LIFE AND 
SERVICES 


OF 
GEORGE BROWN GOODE, 


Assistant Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution, in charge of the 
United States National Museum. 


MEMORIAL EXERCISES. 


On Saturday evening, February 13, 1897, a meeting was held in the 
lecture room of the United States National Museum to commemorate the 
life and services of George Brown Goode. Over four hundred persons 
were assembled, representing the seven scientific societies, the patriotic 
and historical societies, of Washington, the American Philosophical 
Society, and the American Society of Naturalists. 


The programme was as follows: 


MEMORIAL MEETING. 


You ARE invited to attend a Memorial Meeting, under the auspices 
of the Joint Commission of the Scientific Societies, and in co-operation 
with the Patriotic and Historical Societies, of Washington, to commem- 
orate the life and services of 


GEORGE BRowN GOoopDk, LL.D., 


Assistant Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution, in charge of the 
United States National Museum. 


The meeting will be held inthe Lecture Room of the National Museum, 
Saturday evening, February 13, 1897, at 8 o’clock. 


Washington, February 6, 1897, 


PROGRAMME. 
Introductory remarks by the President of the Joint Commission, 
Hon. GARDINER G. HUBBARD 


Address by the Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution, 


Dr. S: 2. LANGLEY 


Goode as a Historian and Citizen, 


Hon. WILLIAM L. WILSON 


Goode as a Naturalist, 


Pror. HENRY F. OSBORN 


Goode’s Activities in Relation to American Science 


Pror. WILLIAM H. DaLL 


INTRODUCTORY REMARKS. 


By GARDINER GREENE HUBBARD, 
President of the Joint Commission of the Scientific Socteties. 


This day was selected as the day to pay tribute to Doctor G. Brown 
Goode, as it is his natalday. On my return to Boston from the maritime 
provinces last summer, I heard with deep regret of the death, a few days 
before, of Doctor George Brown Goode. ‘To me he had been a friend; 
to me his death was a deep personal loss and sorrow. ‘To him I have 
turned for counsel, for advice, for sympathy, and his response was 
prompt, earnest, and cordial. Do I not express the feeling of all who 
knew him? Never was there a truer and more intelligent counselor, a 
more sympathetic friend, a more ready helper, a more kindly nature. 


None knew him but to love him, 
None named him but to praise. 


It was at Twin Oaks, one of the last Sundays in June, that he spent 
the last morning with us. He walked with us through the grounds’ 
twining ways, pointing out the beauties of the flowers, which he was so 
quick to see, and showing a knowledge of the habits and needs of every 
tree and shrub. He passed through the grounds to the library and 
looked over a portfolio of recent Japanese prints. He showed a perfect 
familiarity with them, selecting the good, rejecting the poor, and know- 
ing the value of each. With books he was equally familiar, and more 
than once suggested some rare book that I should like to obtain. Books 
were his friends and companions. His reading was extensive and varied. 
He knew my pedigree better than I, and corrected mistakes that I had 
made in preparing my genealogy for the Society of Colonial Wars, in 
which organization he was deeply interested. His mind was versatile, 
his interests widespread, his tastes refined, his judgment correct. He 
was a true lover of nature, of art, of beauty everywhere. He heralded 
to us the first coming of the birds, he knew their notes, and welcomed 
the opening of the spring blossoms. He was alive to every bit of earth 
and sky. With all the pressure of numerous and varied cares and respon- 
sibilities, he lent a ready ear, a helping hand, to all who asked his aid. 
He would read and correct a manuscript for a friend, conduct another 


5 


6 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


through the Museum and open to him its treasures, or prepare a scheme 
for an exposition at Chicago or Atlanta. Into the work of the Museum 
he threw his whole heart and life. He knew it in all its strength 
and weakness, its deficiencies, its wealth, its possibilities, and therefore 
believed in its glorious future. He knew it in all its different depart- 
ments—in its minute details. Hewelcomed every new object that was 
brought into the Museum and directed its disposition. He refused the 
appointment of Commissioner of Fisheries and remained in charge of the 
Museum at a smaller salary, because he felt his services were more needed 
there. He was urged last summer to go to the Seal Islands, a trip he 
would gladly have taken, but he was reluctant to leave his work. He 
remained to die at his post. 

Others will speak of him in his public relations; others can estimate 
his scientific attainments and the debt of gratitude the Museum owes to 
his faithful and skillful administration; others will weave and lay upon 
his tomb wreaths and garlands. I bring but a few violets, the expres- 
sion of my personal love and esteem. He was a friend whom I loved 
and whom I miss from my daily life. 


OPENING ADDRESS. © 


By SAMUEL PIRRPONT LANGLEY, 


Secretary, Smithsonian Institution. 


While I am aware that it is only fitting that I should say something 
here about one I knew so well as the late Doctor Goode, I feel the occa- 
sion a trying one, for he was so dear a friend that my very nearness and 
sense of a special bereavement must be a sufficient excuse for asking 
your indulgence, since I can not speak of him even yet without pain, 
and I must say but little. 

Here are some who knew him still longer than I, and many who can 
estimate him more justly in all his scientific work, and to those who can 
perform this task'so much better, I leave it. I will only try to speak, 
however briefly, from a personal point of view, and chiefly of those 
moral qualities in which our friendship grew, and of some things apart 
from his scientific life which this near friendship showed me. 

As I first remember him it seems to me, looking back in the light of 
more recent knowledge, that it was these moral qualities which I first 
appreciated, and that if there was one which more than another formed the 
basis of his character it was sincerity—a sincerity which was the ground 
of a trust and confidence such as could be instinctively given, even 
from the first, only to an absolutely loyal and truthful nature. In him 
duplicity of motive even, seemed hardly possible, for, though he was in 
a good sense, worldly wise, he walked by a single inner light, and this 
made his road clear even when he was going over obscure ways, and 
made him often a safer guide than such wisdom alone would have done. 
He was, I repeat, a man whom you first trusted instinctively, but also one 
in whom every added knowledge explained and justified this confidence. 

This sincerity, which pervaded the whole character, was united with 
an unselfishness so deep-seated that it was not conscious of itself, and 
was, perhaps, not always recognized by others. It is asubject of regret 
to me, now it is too late, that I seem myself to have thus taken it too 
much as a matter of course in the past, at times like one I remember, 
when, as I afterwards learned, he was suffering from wretched health, 
_ which he concealed so successfully while devoting himself to my help, 
that I had no suspicion till long after of the effort this must have cost 

7 


. 


8 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


him. He lived not for himself, but for others and for his work. There 
was no occasion when he could not find time for any call to aid, and the 
Museum was something to which he was willing to give of his own 
slender means. 

Connected with this was an absence of any wish to personally domi- 
nate others or to force his own personal ways upon them. It is pleas- 
antest to live our own life if we can, and with him every associate and 
subordinate had a moral liberty that is not always enjoyed, for apart from 
his official duties, he obtruded himself upon no one with advice, and his 
private opinion was to be sought, not proffered. 

His insight into character was notable, and it was perhaps due as 
much as anything to a power of sympathy that produced a gentleness in 
his private judgment of others, which reminded one of the saying, that if 
we could comprehend everything we could pardon everything. He com- 
prehended and he pardoned. 

Associate this tolerance of those weaknesses in others, even which he 
did not share, with the confidence he inspired and with this clear insight, 
and we have some idea of the moral qualities which tempered the 
authority he exercised in his administrative work, and which were the 
underlying causes of his administrative excellence. I do not know 
whether a power of reading character is more intuitive or acquired; at 
any rate without it men may be governed, but not in harmony, and must 
be driven rather than led. Doctor Goode was in this sense a leader, 
quite apart from his scientific competence. Every member of the force 
he controlled, not only among his scientific associates, but down to the 
humblest employees of the Museum, was an individual to him, with 
traits of character which were his own and not another’s, and which were 
recognized in all dealings. And in this I think he was peculiar, for I 
have known no man who seemed to possess this sympathetic insight in 
such a degree; and certainly it was one of the sources of his strength. 

I shall have given, however, a wrong idea of him if I leave anyone 
under the impression that this sympathy led to weakness of rule. He 
knew how to say ‘‘no,’’ and said it as often as any other, and would 
reprehend where occasion called, in terms the plainest and most uncom- 
promising a man could use, speaking so when he thought it necessary, 
even to those whose association was voluntary, but who somehow were 
not alienated, as they would have been by such censure from another. 
‘‘He often refused me what I most wanted,” said one of his staff to me, 
‘‘but Inever went to sleep without having in my own mind forgiven him.’’ 

I have spoken of some of the moral qualities which made all rely upon 
him, and which were the foundation of his ability to deal with men. To 
them was joined that scientific knowledge without which he could not 
have been a Museum administrator, but even with this knowledge he 
could not have been what he was, except from the fact that he loved the 
Museum and its administration above every other pursuit, even, I think, 


Memorial Meeting. 9 


above his own special branch of biological science. He was a man of 
the widest interests I have ever known, so that whatever he was speak- 
ing of at any moment, seemed to be the thing he knew best. It was 
often hard to say, then, what love predominated; but I think that he had, 
on the whole, no pleasure greater than that in his Museum administra- 
tion, and that, apart from his family interests and joys, this was the 
deepest love of all. He refused advantageous offers to leave it, though I 
ought to gratefully add here, that his knowledge of my reliance upon 
him and his unselfish desire to aid me, were also among his determining 
motives in remaining. ‘They were natural ones in such a man. 

What were the results of this devotion may be comprehensively seen 
in the statement that in the year in which he was first enrolled among 
the officers of the Museum the entries of collections numbered less than 
200,000, and the staff, including honorary collaborators and all subordi- 
nates, thirteen persons, and by comparing these early conditions with 
what they became under his subsequent management. 

Professor Baird at the first was an active manager, but from the time 
that he became Secretary of the Institution he devolved more and more 
of the Museum duties on Doctor Goode, who for nine years preceding 
his death was practically in entire charge of it. It is strictly within the 
truth then to say that the changes which have taken place in the Museum 
in that time are more his work than any other man’s, and when we find 
that the number of persons employed has grown from thirteen to over 
two hundred, and the number of specimens from 200,000 to over 
3,000,000, and consider that what the Museum now is, its scheme and 
arrangement, with almost all which make it distinctive; are chiefly 
Doctor Goode’s, we have some of the evidence of his administrative 
capacity. He was fitted to rule and administer both men and things, 
and the Museum under his management was, as someone has called it, 
‘““A house full of ideas and a nursery of living thought.”’ 

Perhaps no one can be a ‘‘naturalist,’’ in the larger sense, without 
being directly a lover of Nature and of all natural sights and sounds. 
One of his family says: 

He taught us all the forest trees, their fruits and flowers in season, and to know 
them when bare of leaves by their shapes; all the wayside shrubs, and even the flow- 
ers of the weeds; all the wild birds and their notes, and the insects. His ideal of an 
old age was to have a little place of his own ina mild climate, surrounded by his 


books for rainy days, and friends who cared for plain living and high thinking, with 
a chance to help someone poorer than he. 


He was a loving and quick observer, and in these simple natural joys 
his studies were his recreations, and were closely connected with his 
literary pursuits. 

I have spoken of his varied interests and the singular fullness of his 

-knowledge in fields apart from biologic research. He was a genealogist 
of professional completeness and exactitude, and a historian, and of him in 


IO Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


these capacities alone, a biography might be written; but his well-founded 
claim to be considered a literary man as well as a man of science, rests as 
much on the excellent English style; clear, direct, unpretentious, in which 
he has treated these subjects, as on his love of literature in general. I 
pass them, however, with this inadequate mention, from my incompetence 
to deal with him as a genealogist, and becayse his aspect as a historian 
will be presented by another; but while I could only partly follow him 
in his-genealogical studies, we had together, among other common tastes, 
that love of general literature just spoken of, and I, who have been a 
widely discursive reader, have never met a mind in touch with more far- 
away and disconnected points than his, nor one of more breadth and 
variety of reading, outside of the range of its own specialty. This read- 
ing was also, however, associated with a love of everything which could 
illustrate his special science on this literary side. The extent of this 
illustration is well shown by the wealth and aptness of quotation in the 
chapter headings of his American Fishes, his Game Fishes of North 
America, and the like, and in his knowledge of everything thus 
remotely connected with his ichthyologic researches, from St. Anthony’s 
Sermon to Fishes, to the Literature of Fish Cookery, while in one of his 
earliest papers, written at nineteen, his fondness for Isaac Walton and 
his familiarity with him, are evident. He had a love for everything to do 
with books, such as specimens of printing and binding, and for etchings 
and engravings, and he was an omnivorous reader, but he read to collect, 
and oftenest in connection with the enjoyment of his outdoor life and all 
natural things. One of these unpublished collections, The Music of 
Nature, contains literally thousands of illustrated poems or passages 
from his favorite poets. 

These were his recreations, and among these little excursions into 
literature, ‘‘the most pathetic, and yet in some respects the most con- 
solatory,’’? says his literary executor, ‘‘seems to have been suggested 
by an article on the literary advantages of weak health, for with this 
thought in mind he had collected from various sources accounts of literary 
work done in feeble health, which he brought together under the title 
Mens Sana in Corpore /zsano.’’ 

Still another collection was of poems relating to music, of which he was 
an enthusiastic lover. He sang and played well, but this I only learned 
after his death, for it was characteristic of his utter absence of display, that 
during our nine years’ intimacy he never let me know that he had such 
accomplishments; though that he had a large acquaintance with musical 
instruments I was, of course, aware from the collections he had made. 

We must think of him with added sympathy, when we know that he 
lost the robust health he once enjoyed, at that early time during his first 
connection with the Museum, when he gave himself with such uncalcu- 
lating devotion to his work as to overtask every energy and permanently 
impair his strength. It was only imperfectly restored when his excessive 


Memorial Meeting. rigs 


labors in connection with the Centennial Exposition brought on another 
attack, and this condition was renewed at times through my acquaintance 
with him. When we see what he has done, we must remember, with now 
useless regret, under what conditions all this was accomplished. 

I have scarcely alluded to his family life, for of his home we are not to 
speak here, further than to say that he was eminently a domestic man, 
finding the highest joys that life brought him with his family and children. 
Of those who hear me to-night most knew him personally, and will bear 
me witness, from his daily life, that he was a man one felt to be pure in 
heart as he was clean of speech, always sociable, always considerate of 
his associates, a most suggestive and helpful man; an eminently unselfish 
man—imay I not now say that he was what we then did not recognize, in 
his simplicity, a gveaf man? 


It is a proof [says one who knew him] of the unconsciousness and unobstrusive- 
ness which chracterized Doctor Goode in all his associations and efforts that, until 
his death came, few, if any, even of his intimate friends, realized the degree to 
which he had become necessary to them. All acknoweledged his ability, relied on 
his sincerity, knew how loyally he served every cause he undertook. The news of 
his death showed them for the first time what an element of strength he was in the 
work and ambitions of each of them. With a sudden shock they saw that their 
futures would have less of opportunity, less of enthusiasm and meaning, now that 
he was gone. 


He has gone; and on the road where we are all going, there has not 
preceded us a man who lived more for others, a truer man, a more loyal 
friend. 


Rahs 
oy 6 ives ea 


Ce! 


ohm 


GOODE AS A HISTORIAN AND CITIZEN. 


By WILLIAM LYNE WILSON, 
Postmaster-General of the United States. 


It has been most appropriately assigned to those who saw, and were 
privileged to see, more of Doctor Goode than myself, in his domestic life 
and in daily official intercourse, to speak of his virtues and his most 
charming and lofty traits as a man; and to speak of him in his chosen 
field of science must be assigned to those who do not, like myself, stand 
outside of the pale of scientific attainment. The somewhat humbler part 
is mine to speak of Doctor Goode in those relations in life in which he 
was probably less known and less thought of than as a man of science or 
in other fields of his distinguished attainment. 

The German professor, of whom it is related that on his deathbed he 
mourned the waste of his life work in expending his energies on the 
entire Greek language instead of concentrating them on the dative case, 
gives a ludicrous and extreme illustration of that necessity for division 
of labor and of specialization which all men recognize in this age of 
ours. In the field of intellectual, as in that of mechanical, occupation, 
the “‘jack-of-all-trades’’ is master of none; and while the rule for the 
intellectual man and for the great student must always be to endeavor 
to know everything of something and something of everything—at least 
of everything connected with that something—it is becoming more and 
more difficult in the compass of human life and human attainment to 
live up to that rule. 

Doctor Goode was honored in his own country and in other countries 
as an eminent man of science, and deservedly so honored, and his lasting 
fame must rest upon his solid and substantial contributions to science 
and the advancement of human knowledge, on his eminent success as an 
administrator of scientific organizations, and on that work which all his 
life shows to have been most congenial to him—the bringing of science 
down to the interest and instruction of the people. 

He was a richly endowed man, first with that capacity and that 
. resistless bent toward the work in which he attained his great distinction 
that made it a perennial delight to him; but he was scarcely less richly 


3 


14 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


endowed in his more unpretending and large human sympathies, and it 
was this latter that distinguished him as a citizen and a historian. 

It has been said time and again, with more or less truth, of the great 
English universities, and possibly of similar great schools in our own 
country, that they tend to make a caste, and that men who come out 
from them find themselves separated from the great mass of their fellow- 
citizens, out of sympathy with the thought, the action, and the daily life 
of the generation in which they move. ‘This certainly could never be 
said of Doctor Goode. As a citizen he was full of patriotic American 
enthusiasm. He understood, as all must understand who look with 
seriousness upon the great problems that confront a free people and who 
measure the difficulties of those problems—he understood that at least 
one preparation for the discharge of the duties of American citizenship 
was the general education of the people, and so he advocated as far as 
possible bringing within the reach of all the people not only the oppor- 
tunities but the attractions and the incitements to intellectual living. 
It was one of his favorite ideas that there should be in every town, 
and even in the villages of the country, at least some sort of a library, 
at least some sort of a reading room, at least some sort of a museum, 
to quicken and generate the intellectual life of that community, and 
possibly to stimulate men to the high career which he and others like 
him have been stimulated to from such beginnings. 

But Doctor Goode knew also that mere education—literary or scien- 
tific—whatever it might do for the individual, however much of power 
or distinction it might give to him, and however much of personal enjoy- 
ment and luxury it might bring to him, is not the only thing required to 
make an American citizen, and I am satisfied that the work which he 
did in the field of American history was connected, closely connected, 
with this general idea. It is not only that we have free institutions in 
this country, it is not only that we have universal education, at least 
within the reach of the people of this country ; we have as our chief reli- 
ance for success in the future, as it has been our chief safety in the past, 
the rich political heritage of hundreds of years’ training in these institu- 
tions, and Doctor Goode, with the quick and warm sympathies of the 
man and of the historian, seems to have felt that he could do no greater 
service to the people of his day and generation and to his country than 
in the most attractive and concrete way (if I may so express it) to lead 
the young men of this country to the study of the history of the past— 
to the deeds and the writings of the great men to whom we owe the 
foundation and the perpetuation of our institutions. This was probably 
somewhat the result of his personal sympathies, feeling that what 
influenced him would influence others, and it was a wise and proper 
conclusion. 

The study of the past, the study of the lives of those who have been 
eminent and useful men in the past, is a potent influence on high, intel- 


Memorial Meeting. ES 


ligent, patriotic effort in the present. The zodlesse oblige of a patriotic 
and substantial ancestry, not only for the individual but for the country 
itself, is a power whose influence we can scarcely exaggerate. I have 
thought, as I have visited the great universities of England and seen in 
their common halls, where once a day the students meet to partake of 
one meal at least in common, as upon their walls I have seen in living 
canvas the portraits of the great men of their special colleges—of Isaac 
Barron, Thomas Babington Macaulay, and all the English bishops at 
Trinity—and each exhibiting groups of those who have risen to useful- 
ness and done great deeds in literature, in science, in public life, in war, 
or in any of the elements and fields of English greatness, that there was 
a mute appeal to every Englishman from those walls to be worthy of his 
country and of his college. 

It must have been something of this idea that induced the old Roman 
to place in the entrance to his house the effigies of every member of his 
family who had borne a high office in the state. As his son came in and 
out of that house, he passed between effigies, as lifelike as Roman art 
could make them, of every member of that family who had held a high 
office, or magistracy, in the Roman commonwealth. He was stimulated 
to patriotism by the examples of his fathers—of those who had led 
armies, of those who had extended the limits of the empire, of those 
who had triumphed on returning from foreign fields of conquest and vic- 
tory, of those whose names were revered in the annals of his country— 
and so it must have been, consciously or unconsciously, some feeling of 
this kind that seems almost from Doctor Goode’s youth to have led him 
into the field of genealogical inquiry and study, led him into the field of 
historic study, grouping his studies, as he seems to have done, around 
great and inspiring characters. 

Perhaps no family in this country has had so perfect a book, so com- 
plete a study of all of its branches, as Doctor Goode gave to the family 
whose name he bore in that book entitled Virginia Cousins, and it is 
especially gratifying to me to know that Virginia history, so much 
neglected, was perhaps the favorite field of Doctor Goode’s study and 
investigation. He was a student of the writings of Washington, and 
gathered all the material he could find about that great Virginian. He 
was a student of the writings of Jefferson; he was a student of the lives 
of other distinguished men of that old Commonwealth, and I am told 
that he had in contemplation the publication of a book to be called 
Virginia Worthies, in which doubtless he would have tried to give 
the proper standing to that minor and second class of Virginia’s great 
men of whom the country at large knows so much less to-day than it 
ought to know. 

Not only, however, in the study of the men and the history of the 
_ Commonwealth from which in one line of his ancestry he was sprung 
was Doctor Goode a student. He was a student of American history at 


16 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


large. He was one of the Council of the American Historical Associa- 
tion, and it was particularly through his efforts that the connection 
between that association and the Smithsonian Institution was brought 
about. He was one of the organizers here but a few months ago of the 
Southern History Association, and took great interest in the work that 
is projected by it. He was connected with the great organizations, the 
Sons of the American Revolution and the Sons of the Revolution, presi- 
dent of the first and vice-president of the other, and not as a mere office- 
holder, not as a mere member, but as a zealous, enthusiastic, intelligent 
worker. 

But Doctor Goode was not only a historian in this respect and in 
this peculiar way. He was also a historian of science, and he seems here 
likewise to have followed the same general idea of grouping scientific 
history—the history of scientific progress—around the particular men 
and individuals connected with that progress. 

Iam assured by those who are more capable of speaking authoritatively 
on such a subject than I am, that in certain papers of his, partly pub- 
lished, and partly as yet unpublished, he has given us the most interest- 
ing and instructive history yet produced of the progress of science in the 
United States; so that it is not attributing to Doctor Goode a novel and 
undeserved character to speak of him to-night asa historian. Had his 
life been spared, in his peculiar way, in his own personal and attractive 
manner, he would doubtless have made most substantial contributions to 
the study of American history, and I can not doubt, as I have already 
said, that in doing this he was impelled by the patriotic idea that he was 
helping to build up a strong American intelligent citizenship in the 
country he loved so well. 


GOODE AS A NATURALIST. 


By HENRY FAIRFIELD OSBORN, 
DaCosta Professor of Zoology, Columbia University. 


The designation ‘‘ naturalist’? was one which Goode richly earned and 
which he held most dear, and our deep sorrow is that his activity as a 
naturalist extended only over a quarter of a century. We are cheered 
by the thought that he was a man of whom no adverse word can ever be 
spoken either in science or in character. We think of both at this time, 
because in him the man and the profession were inseparable and con- 
stantly interacting. His scientific virtues were of the order rare as the 
Christian virtues, and we can not thoroughly understand his scientific 
career unless we understand him as a man. Errors of judgment, mis- 
leading tenets, and adherence to false hypotheses among some of the 
most gifted of our professional ancestors have arisen as often from defect 
of principle and from personal prejudices as from defect of knowledge. 
We see in our friend, on the other hand, that the high standard of scien- 
tific achievement was constantly parallel with and very largely the out- 
growth of a high standard of personal character and motive. 

In brief, the work of the true naturalist is ever lighted by the four 
lamps, of love, of truth, of breadth, and of appreciation, and all of these 
shone brightly upon the path of Goode. His love of nature was inborn, 
predetermining his career, and so far surpassing his self-interest we fear 
it is only too true that he sacrificed his life for the diffusion of natural 
truth. So far as I know, he never entered a scientific controversy and 
was never under temptation to warp or deflect facts to support an 
hypothesis; yet he was incapable of tampering with truth under any 
circumstances which might have arisen. His presidential address of 1887 
before the Biological Society of Washington showed him as scrupulous not 
to overestimate as he was eager not to underestimate the existing status 
of American science. While largely cultivated by wide experience in 
contact with nature and men, his breadth of view was certainly innate. 
If Goode had a fault, it was that his interests were too numerous and his 
sympathies too broad. He displayed not only a warm appreciation of 
those around him and an enthusiasm for contemporary research, but an 
exceptional sense of the close bonds between the present and the past— 


NAT MUS 97, PT 2 2 17 


18 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


as seen in his admiration for the pioneers of American science and his 
repeated vindication of their services. This passion for history led to an 
important phase of his literary work. His fine addresses, The Begin- 
nings of Natural History in America (1886), The Beginnings of Amer- 
ican Science (1887), The Literary Labors of Benjamin Franklin (1890), 
The Origin of the National Scientific and Educational Institutions 
of the United States (1890), and An Account of the Smithsonian 
Institution (1895), sprang from the same instinct which prompted 
him to compile the valuable bibliographies of Baird, of Girard, of Lea, 
and of Sclater, and to undertake the remarkable genealogy of his own 
family entitled Virginia Cousins. ‘The time between 1887 and 1895 
which he devoted to these subjects caused some of his fellow-naturalists 
anxiety; yet I fancy this work was largely sought by him for diversion 
and rest, just as Michael Foster tells us that philosophy and controversy 
served as recreation to Huxley, at a time when overwork had given hima 
passing distaste for morphology. 

His trend of life guided by these four beacon lights was swayed by 
two countercurrents—first, his strong impulses as an original investiga- 
tor, and, second, his convictions as to the duty of spreading the knowl- 
edge of nature. These currents moved him alternately. The most 
superficial view of his career shows that his whole environment fostered 
his public spirit and made difficult and at times impossible the retirement 
so essential to studies in nature. 

Goode’s practical and public achievements for natural history there- 
fore do him even more honor than his writings, because from June, 1870, _ 
when he graduated from Wesleyan University, to September, 1896, 
administrative service became paramount, and he was free to devote only 
the odd intervals of his time to research. Our great gain in the national 
institutions he has advanced is our corresponding loss in ichthyology and 
the kindred branches of zoology. 

Goode’s successful work in the natural history courses at Wesleyan 
led at graduation to a place in the college museum, where in 1870 he at 
once showed his great talent for systematic arrangement. In further 
preparation for zoology, he went to Harvard, and for a few months came 
under the genial influence of Louis Agassiz. But the turning point in 
his life came in 1872, when, working as a volunteer upon the United 
States Fish Commission, at Eastport, he met Spencer F. Baird. The 
kind of simple but irresistible force which Abraham Lincoln exerted 
among statesmen Baird seems to have exerted among naturalists. He 
at once noted young Goode’s fine qualities, adopted him, and rapidly 
came to be the master spirit in his scientific life. Goode delighted to 
work with a man so full of all that constitutes true greatness. He fre- 
quently spoke of Baird as his master, and intimate friends say that he 
never showed quite the same buoyant spirit after Baird’s death—he felt 
the loss so keenly. Baird took Goode to Washington in the winter of 
1872 and practically determined his career, for he promoted him rapidly 


Memorial Meeting. 19 


through every grade of the Fish Commission and Museum service. It 
is hard to realize now the intensely rapid and eager development of our 
national scientific institutions in those years. 

No doubt Baird’s mantle fell fittingly upon Goode’s shoulders, and he 
had all but the magnificent physique of his master to qualify him for 
this heavy burden. His talents and methods were of a different order. 
Both men enjoyed universal admiration, respect, and even love, but 
Baird drove men before him with quiet force while Goode drew men 
after him. Lacking the self-confidence of Baird, Goode was rather per- 
suasive than insistent. His success of administration also came partly 
from an instinctive knowledge of human nature and his large faculty of 
putting himself in other men’s shoes. He sought out the often latent 
best qualities of the men around him and developed them. When things 
were out of joint and did not move his way, he waited with infinite 
patience for the slow operation of time and common sense to set them 
right. He was singularly considerate of opinion. Not ‘‘I think,’’ but 
*‘Don’t you think,’’ was his way of entering a discussion. I am 
reminded of the gentleness of my teacher, Francis Balfour, when one 
of his students carelessly destroyed a rare and valuable preparation, as I. 
learn from one of Goode’s associates that under similar provocation, 
without a word of reproof, he stooped over to repair the damage himself. 
' He was fertile of original ideas and suggestions, full of invention and of 
new expedients, studying the best models at home and abroad, but never 
bound by any traditions of system or of classification. He showed these 
qualities in a marked degree in the remarkable fisheries exhibit which 
he conceived and executed for Berlin in 1879, and continued to show 
them in his rapid development of the scope as well as of the detail of a 
great museum. ‘To all his work also he brought a refined artistic taste, 
shown in his methods of printing and labeling, as well as in his encour- 
agement of the artistic, and, therefore, the truthful and realistic develop- 
ment of taxidermy in the arrangement of natural groups of animals. To 
crown all, like Baird, he entered into the largest conception of the wide- 
reaching responsibilities of his office under the Government, fully realiz- 
ing that he was not at the head of a university or of a metropolitan 
museum, but of the Museum of a great nation. Every reasonable request 
from another institution met a prompt response. I well recall Goode’s 
last visit to the American Museum in New York, and his hearty approval 
of the work there, especially his remark, ‘‘I am glad to see these things 
being done so well in this country.’’ Not the advancement of Washing- 
ton science but of American science was his dominating idea. 

In fact, every act and every word of Goode’s breathed the scientific 
creed which he published in 1888: 

The greatest danger to science is, perhaps, the fact that all who have studied at all 
within the last quarter of a century have studied its rudiments*and feel competent 


* to employ its methods and its language and to form judgments on the merits of cur- 
rent work. . . . Inthe meantime the professional men of science, the scholars, 


20 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


and the investigators seem to me to be strangely indifferent to the questions as to 
how the public at large is to be made familiar with the resultsof their labors. . . . 
It may be that the use of the word naturalist is to become an anachronism, and that 
we are all destined to become generically biologists and specifically morphologists, 
histologists, embryologists, physiologists. 

I can but believe, however, that it is the duty of every scientific scholar, however 
minute his specialty, to resist in himself, and in the professional circles which sur- 
round him, the tendency toward narrowing technicality in thought and sympathy, 
and above all in the education of nouprofessional students. 

Ican not resist the feeling that American men of science are in a large degree 
responsible if their fellow-citizens are not fully awake to the claims of scientific 
endeavor in their midst. 

I am not in sympathy with those who feel that their dignity is lowered when their 
investigations lead toward improvement in the physical condition of mankind, but 
I feel that the highest function of science is to minister to their mental and moral 
welfare. Here in the United States, more than in any other country, it is necessary 
that sound, accurate knowledge and a scientific manner of thought should exist 
among the people, and the man of science is becoming, more than ever, the natural 
custodian of the treasured knowledge of the worid. ‘To him, above all others, falls 
the duty of organizing and maintaining the institutions for the diffusion of knowl- 
edge, many of which have been spoken of in these addresses—the schools, the 
museums, the expositions, the societies, the periodicals. To him, more than to any 
other American, should be made familiar the words of President Washington in his 
farewell address to the American people: 

‘Promote, then, as an object of primary importance, institutions for the general 
diffusion of knowledge. In proportion as the structure of a government gives force 
to public opinions it should be enlightened.”’ 


As a naturalist Goode did not close any of the windows opening out 
intonature. His breadth of spirit in public affairs displayed itself equally 
in his methods of field and sea work and in the variety of his observa- 
tions and writings. While fishes became his chief interest, he knew all 
the Eastern species of birds after identifying and arranging the collection 
in his college museum. He loved plants, and in the latter years of his 
life took great pleasure in the culture of the old-fashioned garden around 
his house. He was not wedded to his desk, to dry bones, nor to alcoholic 
jars. His sea studies and travels ranged as early as 1872 from the Ber- 
mudas to Eastport on the Bay of Fundy; to Casco Bay in 1873, to Noank,. 
on Long Island Sound, in 1874. Here he conceived a great Index 
Bibliography of American Ichthyology, a work which he did not live 
to complete, and here he met his future colleague, Bean, who describes 
him as ‘‘a young man with plump cheeks and a small moustache.’’ 
During the following two years his assistant curatorship at the National 
Museum confined him, but in 1877 he was studying the fisheries off 
Halifax, and in 1879 at Provincetown. ‘The work of the fishery census 
was starting up in earnest, and Goode was busy planning and getting 
together his men. Special agents were sent out, to every part of the 
coast and to the Great Lakes, to gather information. Goode worked at it 
himself on Cape Cod, and manifested the same enthusiasm as in every 
other piece of work he took up. He interested himself in getting together 


Memorial Meeting. 2% 


a collection representing the methods of the fisheries and the habits of 
the fishermen. Neglecting neither the most trivial nor important objects, 
branching out into every collateral matter, he showed his grasp both of 
principles and of details. 

His literary bent and facility of written expression showed itself before 
his graduation at Wesleyan in the College Argus, which contains seven 
brief papers, including his first scientific article, prophetically entitled 
Our Museum. He contributed to the American Naturalist in 1871 a 
note upon The Billfish in Fresh Water, and in 1872 A Sea Bird Inland. 
He published and presented before the American Association in 1873 his 
first paper of importance, entitled Do Snakes Swallow Their Young? 
These studies of real merit foreshadow two marked features of his later 
work—first, his recognition of the importance of distribution, which cul- 
minated in the preparation of his unfinished memoir upon the Geographi- 
cal Distribution of Deep Sea Fishes; second, his close observance of the 
habits of animals, which was of marked usefulness in his subsequent Fish 
Commission service and treatises upon fish-culture. His Catalogue of 
the Fishes of the Bermudas, from his visit in 1872, indicates how early in 
life he had thought out a thoroughly philosophical method of studying a 
local fauna: ‘‘In working up my notes,’’ he says, ‘‘I have endeavored 
to supplement previous descriptions by (1) descriptions of the colors of 
the fishes while living, (2) notes on size and proportions, (3) observa- 
tions on habits, (4) hints in reference to the origin and meaning of their 
popular names, (5) notes upon modes of capture and economic value.’’ 
He increased the number of recorded species from seven to seventy-five, 
and gave a careful analysis of their probable geographical derivation. 

Many of his briefer papers deal directly with the biological problems 
which attracted his interest, especially among reptiles and fishes, touch- 
ing such questions as migration, coloring, albinism, mimicry, parasitism, 
feeding and breeding habits, and the relation of forest protection to the 
protection of fishes. 

It is difficult to classify the papers, long and short, which we find rap- 
idly succeeding each other in the valuable bibliography prepared by Doctor 
Adler and Mr. Geare. Of his 193 independent papers, 21 are biological, 
g treat of reptiles and amphibians, 38 are devoted to the structure, life 
habits, and distribution of the fishes, in addition to 15 purely systematic 
contributions upon the fishes. Among the former are his large memoirs 
upon the Menhaden, his shorter treatises upon the Trunk Fishes, the 
Pampanos, the Sword Fishes, and the Eel. The work of the Fish Com- 
mission is described, and published at home and abroad, in 30 reports and 
popular papers. ‘The special branch of Fisheries Exhibits is treated in 
8 papers, and of fish-culture in 12 papers. Besides his 14 reports as 
Director of the National Museum he published, between 1881 and 1896, 
13 papers developing the theory and practice of museum administra- 
tion, leading up to his very notable articles, Museums of the Future, 


22 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


Museum History and Museums of History in 1889, and his invalu- 
able memoir upon Museum Administration in 1895. His labors and 
writings placed him in the lead of museum experts in this country and 
upon the level of the distinguished leader of museum development in 
England, Sir William Flower. ‘The closing sentence of his address before 
the English Museums Association must be quoted. ‘‘The degree of civ- 
ilization to which any nation, city, or province has attained is best shown 
by the character of its public museums and the liberality with which they 
are maintained.’’ 

His popular works include the Game Fishes of the United States, pub- 
lished in 1879, a book written in charming literary style, besides innu- 
merable short articles in the Chautauquan, Forest and Stream, and 
Science. In 1888 appeared his American Fishes: A Popular Treatise 
upon the Game and Food Fishes of North America, with special refer- 
ence to habits and methods of capture. These writings give us a further 
insight not only into the two sides of Goode’s scientific nature, the theo- 
retical and the practical, but into his artistic and poetical sentiment and 
into the wide extent of his reading. Besides the long list enumerated 
above, he published 51 joint ichthyological papers with G. Brown, W. O. 
Atwater, R. E. Earll, A. Howard Clark, Joseph W. Collins, Newton P. 
Scudder, but his main collaborateur was Tarleton H. Bean. Under their 
names appear 35 papers, but, chief of all, the Oceanic Ichthyology, a 
Treatise on the Deep Sea and Pelagic Fishes of the World, based chiefly 
upon the collections made by steamers Llake, Albatross, and Fish Hawk 
in the Northwestern Atlantic. 

In 1877 Goode saw his first deep-sea fish drawn fresh from the bottom, 
and experienced a sensation which he thus describes in the preface of his 
monograph: 

The studies which have led to the writing of this book were begun in the summer 
of 1877, when the first deep-sea fishes were caught by American nets on the coast of 
North America. This took place in the Gulf of Maine, 44 miles east of Cape Ann, 
on the 19th of August, when from the side of the United States Fish Commission 
steamer Speedwell the trawlnet was cast in 160 fathoms of water. ‘The writers were 
both standing by the mouth of the net when, as the seamen lifted the end of the bag, 
two strange forms fell out on the deck. A single glance was enough to tell us that 
they were new to our fauna, and probably unknown to science. They seemed like 
visitors from another world, and none of the strange forms which have since passed 
through our laboratory have brought half as much interest and enthusiasm. 
Macrurus bairdii and Lycodes verrillii were simply new species of well-known 
deep-dwelling genera, and have since been found to be very abundant on the conti- 
nental slope, but they were among the first fruits of that great harvest in the field 
of oceanic ichthyology which we have had the pleasure to garner in the fifteen years 
which have passed since that happy and eventful morning. It seems incredible that 


American naturalists should not then have known that a few miles away there was a 


fauna as unlike that of our coast as could be found in the Indian Ocean or the seas 
Ot Chinas. o, 


In one of the latest of his 45 contributions to the Bulletins of the 
United States National Museum is the description of the discovery of the 


Memorial Meeting. 23 


new deep-sea Chimezeroid, for which, true to his appreciation of the past, 
he proposed the name Harriotta, in memory of Thomas Harriott, the 
earliest English naturalist in America. 

The quaint, old-fashioned style of some of Goode’s essays gives us an 
insight into his historic sense and his reversion to the ideas and principles 
of his Virginia ancestors. Seldom have we known the loyal conservative 
spirit, of reverence for old institutions, fealty to independence of socie- 
ties, combined with such a grandly progressive spirit in the cooperation 
of the Government with the state, and of one country with another in 
the promotion of science. 

Again, what impresses us most is Goode as the apostle of scientific 
knowledge. A conviction of his mission in life breathes forth from his 
earliest papers in the College Argus to his final appeal in Science for the 
** Admission of American students to the French universities.’’ 

One of his intimate friends writes: 

Sometimes we talked of more far-reaching matters, and in such discussions I often 
took a position I had no faith in, hoping to draw him out. I remember once we fell 
to talking of the province of science, and for the sake of argument I took the position 
that most scientific work was merely a form of intellectual amusement, and benefited 
noone. He became quite earnest in his protest against that view, and asserted his 
belief that the majority of scientific men were working toward the improvement of 
things and that it was the destiny of science to be the salvation of the world. At 
another time he unfolded the idea that man through science was approaching step 
by step nearer the Infinite Ruler of the Universe, and that it was only through these 
activities that he could hope to reach his proper destiny; that every amelioration of 
life, every improvement in manners, every change in theological tenets was a token 
of man’s unfolding through the working of intellectual forces. 

Our lasting regret must be that Goode’s life terminated just as he had 
richly earned the right to retire from the scientific service of his country— 
from your service and mine, my friends—to devote himself more exclu- 
sively to his own researches. 

As early as 1880, during the Herculean task of entering the new 
National Museum building, Goode remarked to one of his friends, ‘‘ We 
have had pretty hard scrambling—I think we will take a rest presently ’’— 
but, alas! the rest days never came. One duty after another fell heavily 
upon his too-willing shoulders. All must have observed in later years a 
certain quiet melancholy which marked his overwork, and conscious 
inability to cope with all that his ambitious and resourceful spirit 
prompted. None the less he showed a continuous and rapid intellectual 
development during the last ten years of his life, and it was evident that 
his powers were constantly expanding, and that his brightest and most 
productive days were to come in his projected independent and joint 
researches. As before noted, his Geographical Distribution of Deep Sea 
Fishes was nearly completed, the charts having been exhibited before 
the Biological Society, and a mass of voluminous notes and valuable 

“observations are ready to show that the distribution of deep-sea fishes is 
far from being so general as has been supposed, and that there are certain 


24 Memortal of George Brown Goode. 


well-defined thalassic faunal regions. Another projected work for which 
extensive materials were collected was upon the Fishes of America, in 
which Doctor Theodore Gill was to have cooperated. 

Goode was always encouraged by his supreme faith in the reward of 
honest intellectual labor, and it is pleasant to recall now that he took the 
keenest satisfaction in the completion and publication of the Oceanic 
Ichthyology, which revived in him all his old natural-history spirit. He 
regarded it as his chief life work, and once observed to his fellow-writer, 
Tarleton Bean, ‘‘It will be our monument,’’ little foreseeing that so soon 
after its publication he would be gone and that his friends and admirers 
all over the world would share this very thought in receiving the fine 
monograph a few weeks after his sudden and unexpected death. 

Our friend has gone to his fathers. As a public-spirited naturalist he 
leaves us the tender memory and the noble example, which helps us 
and will help many coming men into the higher conception of duty in 
the service and promotion of the truth. We can not forget his smile nor 
his arm passing through the arm of his friend. ‘Thinking little of him- 
self and highly of others, faithful to his duties and loyal to his friends, 
full of good cheer and hopefulness—it is hard for us to close up the ranks 
and march on without him. 


-GOODE’S ACTIVITIES IN RELATION TO AMERICAN SCIENCE, 


By WILLIAM HEALEY DALL, 
Paleontologist, United States Geological Survey. 


Most persons unacquainted with the interior working of our executive 
bureaus have an impression that they are the creation of law, in the sense 
in which the term ‘‘creation’’ was formerly used to describe the coming 
into being of some part of the material universe. Perhaps this impres- 
sion is seldom definitely formulated, but, nevertheless, it is common to 
hear arguments from intelligent people, bent on ameliorating govern- 
ment, which tacitly assume that an act of Congress by some inherent 
magic will accomplish that which they desire. It is a truism that whole 
schemes of social reorganization are built on no better foundation, and 
thousands of earnest reformers work, suffer, and even die for theories 
erected on this hypothesis. 

Whatever of truth there may be in the application of this idea to the 
purely business offices of the Government, where finance, commerce, 
invention, or transportation are provided for, nothing could be more mis- 
taken than its application to the scientific bureaus. For each and every 
one of them the world is indebted to some individual. In the majority 
of cases the man came with his purpose before the law was thought of, 
and his devotion to his self-imposed mission, his persistence, and his 
energy were the inciting causes of some lines in an appropriation bill, 
with all its potentialities, the seed of the present organization. Some- 
times the sower, given the opportunity to dig and water, was spared to 
reap the first fruits of the harvest. On other occasions worthy suc- 
cessors arose, bore the burden and heat of the day, and carried out the 
plans to final triumph. Thus, to Hassler and Bache we owe the Coast 
Survey, which has spread the fame of American achievements in geodetic 
science through every civilized community; to Hayden, King, and 
Powell are due the organization and success of the Geological Survey of 
the United States; to the initiative of Smithson and guiding hand of 
Henry we owe the Smithsonian Institution; the Fish Commission was 
the embodied work of Baird; and to Baird and Goode’s untiring labors 
we are indebted for the National Museum. ‘There remain very few per- 
sons with intimate personal knowledge of the unwritten history of the 


25 


”) 


26 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


gradual development of the Museum. ‘To Professor Henry American 
science owes a debt which is but seldom realized and can hardly be exag- 
gerated. It is difficult for anyone, even with the printed records before 
him, to form an adequate idea of the conditions under which the Smith- 
sonian Institution grew to its present stature, nor what unceasing vigi- 
lance was required of its head to avoid the pitfalls which everywhere 
beset its path in adolescence. Opinions, emphatic and divergent, were 
abundant, in and out of Congress, as to the policy and methods deemed 
desirable for the Institution. Men would have used the fund for a great 
library, museum of art, or university. The original act by which it was 
constituted was a compromise, leaving a door open for the advocates of 
either opinion to modify the policy of the Institution should the time 
come when any particular view could command a majority in the gov- 
erning board. Professor Henry was determined that the ‘‘increase and 
diffusion of knowledge among men’’ in the highest and broadest sense 
of the words should be the object to be attained, and that nothing local 
or special should absorb the funds or the energies of the Institution. 
Such things as could and would be done by other agencies were not to 
be attempted by the Smithsonian, but rather the things worth doing, 
which, except for the aid given by the Institution, could not get done at 
all. ‘TShose branches of activity prescribed by the act creating the Insti- 
tution, but which tended to outgrow a strict subordination and absorb 
undue proportions of the income, were rigorously pruned and sternly 
repressed. It seems strange to recall a time when free speech did not 
exist in the capital of the nation, yet it is within my memory when so 
great was the irritability of the proslavery element in Washington that 
Professor Henry, with an eye single to the welfare of his beloved Insti- 
tution, felt it necessary to warn foreign men of science invited to work or 
lecture here that certain topics must not be touched upon, directly or 
indirectly. Professor Henry knew that the resources of the Smithsonian 
could not support a great museum or a great library and still carry out 
the promotion of science in the wider sense, which was his ideal aim. 
He wished for a national museum and a national library, but only at 
national expense. He approved of the far-reaching explorations and 
collections which the genius of Professor Baird initiated and by untiring 
labors promoted, but he did not wish the enormous mass of material thus 
brought together to be a charge upon the slender funds of the Institu- 
tion. His policy was to distribute to other institutions of learning, 
museums, and colleges, as soon as worked up, everything except a typical 
series of the specimens, thus at once promoting research at other points 
and economizing space and the expenses of preservation. Arrangements 
were made with naturalists all over the country by which material in 
their special lines of research was shipped to them as soon as received, 
to remain indefinitely, until reported upon. The same policy led to 
placing in the Corcoran Gallery of Art such objects of art spared by the 


Memortal Meeting. 27 


great fire of 1865 as that establishment could utilize ; and to the deposit 
in the Library of Congress of the great collection of scientific books and 
periodicals, which was rapidly outgrowing all the limits set by his pru- 
dence. In his determination that nothing should be permitted to divert 
the progress of the Institution from the lines laid down for it, Professor 
Henry thought no labor too great, no personal supervision too minute, 
no just economy too paltry. Who shall say that his lofty purposes and 
unceasing struggles have not been justified by his success? 

Meanwhile Baird’s ambitions and endeavors were leading toward the 
establishment of a national museum in fact, if not inname. Multitu- 
dinous expeditions were set on foot for Pacific railway routes, military 
surveys, the coast survey, the routes for an Isthmian canal, the explora- 
tion of the Hudson Bay territory, Lower California, and Alaska. From 
each and all of these a stream of the most precious material for study 
flowed toward the Smithsonian Institution. The natural sciences all over 
the world were enriched by the countercurrent of published researches 
which poured from those Elizabethan towers. A bevy of students, poor 
in purse, but rich in enthusiasm, in energy and devotion, found shelter 
there. From time to time, as opportunities came, they sallied forth, one 
by one, to the ends of the earth, bent on enriching the collection and 
advancing science, in which they usually succeeded. 

How difficult in such a case tohold the balance true! ‘To preserve for 
study what was needed and yet not to exceed the limits imposed by cir- 
cumstances. To be loyal and true in spirit, as well as in the letter, to 
the policy of the chief, and yet to hold securely for the future that which 
the future would need. Yet this task, so perplexing and so difficult, 
was successfully performed by Baird. He had for Henry an affectionate 
loyalty and veneration asstrong in its way as his devotion to biological 
research, and which supplied a never-failing and most elevating example 
to the younger men about him. 

The establishment of the Fish Commission with its separate income 
partly available for research somewhat ameliorated the situation. The 
establishment of a national museum, as urged by Baird and Henry, 
became a more familiar idea to Congress and the country. With the 
Centennial Exposition of 1876, came an opportunity of which Baird 
was not slow to take advantage. He determined that the exhibition 
made by the United States should bear testimony to what the Museum 
could do both in the way of material and in its presentation. The 
Government made a loan of several millions to the Exposition, which 
no one then supposed would ever be repaid. Members of the appro- 
priations committee felt quite safe in half jokingly assuring Professor 
Baird that if the money ever was repaid an appropriation for a National 
Museum building should not be withheld. The entire staff of the 
. Museum, including several unpaid volunteers, with Goode at their head, 
gave all their energies for nearly a year to make the Government and 


28 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


especially the Museum exhibit a success, feeling that the future of the 
Museum was really at stake. Individuals all over the country were called 
upon to assist by advice or material in their special lines. "Thousands of 
letters were written and thousands of exhibits gathered. Here Goode 
had his first training in the artsof exposition, in which he finally became 
the acknowledged master. Many were the discussions as to system, selec- 
tion of exhibits, cases, labels, and methods in general. It was indeed a 
liberal education to those engaged in the work. No test could have been 
contrived which would better have revealed the strength or weakness, on 
certain sides, of all engaged in it. Men of whom much was expected 
failed utterly. Others developed unexpected capacity and talent. The 
result was a glorious success, acknowledged by all beholders. 

After a certain time the Government loan was repaid, and at last the 
unofficial promises of members of Congress were kept. A sum, pitiably 
small if compared with the money devoted by most civilized nations to 
housing their national museums, was appropriated, and, by a lucky chance, 
an unparalleled depression in the iron trade enabled contracts to be made 
to the great advantage of the Government. <A building without any archi- 
tectural pretensions, but giving light and floor space at a lower cost than 
in any other permanent structure of equal size ever erected by the United 
States, was finally put up, a new organization effected, and at last the 
National Museum possessed a local habitationanda name. ‘The direction 
of its activities, under the supervision of Professor Baird, was placed in 
Goode’s hands, and his career asa Museum administrator officially began. 

It may be thought that the preceding remarks have included very little 
about Goode and a great deal about other matters. Thisis true; but no 
account of the man and his activities would be adequate which omitted a 
delineation of the struggles, fears, and hopes of which, in his position, he 
was the natural heir. A great institution is not created; it is built up. 
With the mortar of its foundations is mixed the blood and sweat of the 
builders. Something of the very soul of its architect springs with its 
pinnacles toward the heavens. ‘The capacity for administration may be 
inborn, the professional knowledge must be earned. ‘These truths are 
singularly ignored, even by those who should know better. In fact our 
people, even those who have much advanced the cause of education, and 
those who have won repute in the fields of politics or business, have not 
wholly shaken off the provincial notion that a museum is a sort of toy 
which an intelligent window-dresser might be competent to manage. 
The realization of the fact that museum administration is a profession, as 
arduous as that of medicine or law, seems to be confined almost entirely 
to those who have actually been devoting their lives to it. That in the 
case of a national museum, as a sort of general clearing house of 
national activities in science, and the chief arena of international scientific 
reciprocity, still wider knowledge of men and their work, a still broader 
mental horizon, and infinite tact and patience are urgently required, is 
still less appreciated. 


Memorial Meeting. 29 


It is true that every administrator must learn and grow with the 
progress of his work; but that the work should be put into the hands of 
total inexperience, as is frequently suggested, is like insisting that all 
our genealogies should be traced from Adam and Eve. 

The relations which Goode bore to the scientific activity of the country 
and less directly to that of the world are best understood through a sketch 
of Museum administration in the concrete. We may begin with condi- 
tions in such an institution itself. 

It is hardly true, as I have heard it somewhat broadly stated by one of 
the uninitiated, that ‘‘scientific men are all cranks,’’ though this estimate 
is by no means without its supporters. Yet it can not be denied that there 
is something out of the common and, to the average citizen, peculiar 
in the mental constitution which leads to the adoption of a profession 
which offers no pecuniary reward at all adequate to the required exertion ; 
which, in this country at least, extends little hope of discrimination from 
quacks and charlatans adept at attracting public notice; in which the 
modest prizes are few and far between, promotion problematical ; where 
the worker must congratulate himself if he is able to support and educate 
his family without actual privation, and must find his reward, if at all, 
in the consciousness of work well done and the esteem of a few contempo- 
rary toilers. Such a mental constitution, I repeat, does have in it some- 
thing different from that of the ordinary mind and something which the 
average man finds difficult to reconcile with his idea of common sense. 
Only the other day I heard of a conscientious guardian of an orphan with 
a small competence, who refused to allow the boy to follow his natural 
bent and become a naturalist, on the ground that it would be a dereliction 
of duty if the guardian permitted his ward to enter upon a career in which 
the rewards are so few and financial success so doubtful. 

Those in whom the bent is so strong as to defy all obstacles not infre- 
quently are somewhat one-sided people. ‘They feel, as they ought to 
feel, that their own specialty is the most important of the many domains 
of science. Since they have not hesitated at any sacrifice to devote them- 
selves to it, it is not unnatural that they should feel that from colaborers 
in science, support, encouragement, and a sufficient allotment from the 
common fund are justly due. Ina great museum this common fund or 
income is never sufficient to meet all demands. ‘The director must be 
more than human who can apportion disappointment without exciting 
disapproval. Yet in the midst of annual expressions of regret I never 
heard Goode’s justice or kindly feeling questioned. 

It sometimes happens, as a’scientist is human, that the weaknesses or 
faults of our common humanity find a lodgment with him, possibly even 
to the point where a love of science seems the only thread withholding 
him from utter shipwreck. The kindly and generous nature of Professor 
_ Baird, joined toa certain practical shrewdness, enabled him to utilize and 
succor, from time to time, such waifs, putting them where the redeeming 
virtue might exert its wholesome influence and the broken soul might 


30 Memortal of George Brown Goode. 


feel the comfort, in hours of remorse, that, after all, its life had not been 
wholly wasted. Baird’s example was not forgotten by his pupil. 

Lest engrossment in a specialty breed indifference to progress in com- 
mon, it is of the highest importance that the leader in a band of workers 
shall use every opportunity of emphasizing their joint responsibility to 
science and to the public, for whose entertainment and instruction the 
museum is supported by public funds. This duty Goode never forgot, 
and by example and precept he continually stimulated each and every 
one to his best efforts. 

The experiments in methods of preservation and exhibition, by which 
the best results are reached, are of interest and value to the whole scien- 
‘tific community. It often happens that only through a long series of 
failures, all more or less costly, is success at last attained. Were each 
museum, private or public, obliged to run the whole gamut of experi- 
ment, the losses would be irreparable and the cost enormous. In this 
direction, as did Baird in his time, Goode developed a particular genius, 
and his successes placed him early in his career in the very front rank, 
if not at the virtual head, of all Museum experts. The results of this 
work were placed freely at the disposition of all interested, and nearly all 
museums in this country and many abroad have materially profited by 
the skill and ingenuity thus displayed. It is highly probable, so modest 
was the originator, that few of those whose work is thus assisted have 
any definite idea of the source from which the facilities came. 

Looking beyond the Museum itself and considering its external rela- 
tions, we find that naturalists and anthropologists all over the country are 
in the habit of appealing to the Director or staff of the National Museum 
for scientific information, advice, or needed assistance in all sorts of 
directions. In many cases the question is not simple, but one requiring 
the utmost consideration and delicacy. 

The needs or requests of different institutions or persons are not infre- 
quently conflicting, and the decision may be far-reaching. "The compe- 
tition between different workers or institutions in the same field is 
liable, unless treated with great tact, to rouse antagonisms. Small 
societies sometimes inadvisedly identify themselves with the opinions or 
theories of some individual member, and if the latter prove contestable 
the amount of human nature which may be displayed is astonishing. It 
has happened that such an organization, in a fit of pique, has showered 
abusive pamphlets over the inhabited universe. Rival candidates for 
coveted posts resort to the most ingenious methods for securing indorse- 
ment contrary to the rules of the institution. Occasions arise when 
advice is sought with seriousness and given with anxiety, as a matter of 
duty. In short, it is required of the head of the Museum to have a gen- 
eral knowledge of the character, responsibility, and reliability of all the 
professional and most of the amateur scientific workers of the country 
and of the character and interrelations of all the more or less scientific 


Memorial Meeting. at 


societies, not only for the use and benefit of the outsiders, but for the 
safety and protection of the Museum itself. While no one could exceed 
Professor Baird in the breadth and accuracy of his information on such 
topics, yet the traditions he handed down and Goode’s own wide knowl- 
edge of the younger generation gave him satisfactory qualifications of 
this most necessary and special kind. 

Leaving the ostensibly scientific, not the least embarrassing duty the 
head of the Museum has to perform is the answering of letters from the 
people at large. Here the variety ranges from the intelligent seeker for 
an explanation of some observed phenomenon, to the fraudulent scheme 
of some rascal for securing books or specimens by false pretenses. ‘The 
most ignorant are often the most confident in their own explanation of 
something which has temporarily puzzled them ; nevertheless they seek 
official sanction and approval. Cranks write letters in blue ink, the 
nouns filled in with red. So and so announces that the Apollonian 
Library, upon whose letter head he writes, is desirous of a full set of the 
publications and, being the only library in a large region round about, 
should undoubtedly receive them; and signs himself librarian. It is 
known to the initiated that the signer is himself the Apollonian Library 
and its only reader. Ill-spelled letters tell of natural curiosities, mar- 
velous to behold, sometimes for sale, sometimes to be freely donated. It 
would bea great mistake to suppose that these letters may be treated 
with scorn, or ignored. It has often happened that the layman in his 
blindness has stumbled upon something good. At any rate he is one of 
the great American people whose taxes support the Museum, and is enti- 
tled to courtesy and illumination if it can be furnished. At all events, 
it will be clear to you that special knowledge, tact, and kindliness will 
not be superfluous in the treatment of the daily mass of correspondence. 

I have tried to throw a little light on the difficulties and problems our 
dear friend met and solved so well. Tilustrations might be greatly mul- 
tiplied did time permit. What has been said, I trust, is enough to show 
that no ordinary man could have done this work (and much else) and 
yet have left behind him no antagonisms, no memories of failure, no 
hint of insufficiency, associated with his name. He is remembered as 
one never weary of welldoing; who reached the heights, though ever 
aiming higher; whose example stimulated and whose history will prove 
a lasting inspiration. 


RESOLUTIONS AND MESSAGES OF SYMPATHY. 


On the completion of the reading of the formal addresses, General 
Orlando B. Willcox, U.S. A., representing the Society of the Sons of the 
American Revolution of the District of Columbia, offered the following 
resolutions, which were seconded by Rear-Admiral James A. Greer, 
U. S. N., representing the Society of the Sons of the Revolution, and 
adopted by a rising vote: 


We, the associates and friends of the late George Brown Goode in the scientific, 
patriotic, and historical societies of the city of Washington, being met together to 
commemorate his life and service, do recognize: 

That in his death the world has lost a great man of true moral worth, unusual 
breadth of intellect, profound human sympathy, unswerving loyalty to his duty, and 
devotion to his family and his friends. 

That America has been deprfved of a most patriotic, public-spirited, and loyal 
citizen, American science of its first historian, and American history of an original 
investigator. 

That universal science has lost one of its foremost ichthyologists and a man broadly 
learned in the entire field of natural history. 

That the scientific service of the United States Government, the societies to which 
he belonged, and all the institutions in America for the promotion of knowledge 
have lost in him an ever faithful and willing cooperator. 

Resolved, That this minute be communicated to the societies of which Doctor 
Goode was a member and a copy be sent to his family, to whom the persons here 
assembled extend their sincere sympathy. 


RESOLUTIONS ADOPTED IN THE SMITHSONIAN INSTITUTION. 


By the Board of Regents of the Smithsonian Institution: 


Whereas the assistant secretary of the Smithsonian Institution, Doctor G. Brown 
Goode, died on September 6, 1896, 

Resolved, That the Board of Regents wish to here record their sense of the devotion 
to duty which in the late Doctor Goode came before any consideration of personal 
advancement, or even before the care of his own health, and of their recognition 
that his high administrative ability and wide knowledge were devoted unselfishly 
to the service of the Institution, with results whose value they can not too highly 
acknowledge; and they desire to express their feeling of the loss that the Institution, 
the National Museum, and the cause of science has sustained in his untimely death. 

Resolved, That a copy of these resolutions be suitably engrossed and transmitted 

“to the family of Doctor Goode. 


NAT MUS 97, PT 2 3 33 


34 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


By the employees of the National Museum: 


Whereas, in the untimely death of Doctor G. Brown Goode the scientific world 
and the American people have suffered an immeasurable loss—we, his assistants, 
collaborators, and friends, knew and esteemed him as an investigator of signal hon- 
esty and ability, as an earnest and efficient administrator whose willing aid and 
forbearance endeared him to all, as a man of pure motives and stainless life, and as 
a faithful friend and mentor—therefore, 

Resolved, That in Doctor Goode’s death we have lost a leader and companion 
whose teachings will always be in our minds and whose memory will forever live in 
our hearts. 

Resolved, That we extend our heartfelt sympathy to the stricken family in this 
our common sorrow. 


RESOLUTIONS ADOPTED BY THE OFFICERS OF THE FIELD COLUMBIAN MUSEUM. 


At a meeting of the director and curators of the Field Columbian 
Museum, Chicago, [llinois, the following preamble and resolutions were 
adopted: 


Whereas, We have learned with great sorrow of the death of the distinguished 
scholar and scientist, Doctor George Brown Goode, Director of the National Museum; 
be it therefore, in grateful tribute to his memory, 

Resolved, That we recognize, as the world has already recognized, the conspicuous 
abilities displayed by him in the particular field of science in which he chose to labor, 
but still more fully we appreciate the fact that in the broader field of museum organ- 
ization and management, a work which he had reduced to science, he stood without 
a peer. Not less admirable, as a feature of his career, is the enviable position always 
held by him as an adviser and helper among his associates, scientific, official, and 
personal, His strong, helpful hand was ever extended. 

Resolved, That we mourn his loss not only on account of these attainments and 
qualities, but also as a man of broad sympathies and tender heart, upright cheerful 
character, and honest, virtuous life. 

Resolved, That our sincere sympathies are hereby extended to the members of his 
bereaved family in the hour of their affliction, and that a copy of these resolutions 
be transmitted to them in token thereof. 

Dello NG isica nin ey 
Director. 
Won. H. HOLMES, 
Curator, Department of Anthropology. 
C. F. MILLSPAUGH, 
Curator, Depariment of Botany. 
O. C. FARRINGTON, 
Curator, Department of Geology. 
H. W. NICHOLS, 
Curator, Department of Economic Geology. 
CHARLES B. Cory, 
Curator, Department of Ornithology. 
S. A. SIMMS, 
Assistant Curator, in Charge of Industrial Arts. 
EK. L. BURCHARD, 
Recorder and Librarian. 


Memorial Meeting. 35 


RESOLUTIONS ADOPTED BY THE NEW YORK ACADEMY OF SCIENCES. 


At a meeting of the biological section of the New York Academy of 
Sciences held October 12, 1896, the following resolution, introduced by 
Professor Henry F. Osborn and seconded by Mr. William T. Hornaday, 
was unanimously adopted by a rising vote: 


Resolved, That the members of the biological section of the New York Academy of 
Sciences desire to express their deep sense of loss in the death of Professor G. Brown 
Goode, of the United States National Museum. In common with all naturalists in 
this country, we have admired his intelligent and highly successful administration 
of the National Museum, as well as his prompt and ready response to the requests 
and needs of similar institutions throughout the country. 

In face of the arduous and exacting duties of his directorship, he has held a lead- 
ing position among American zoologists, and we are indebted to him for a series of 
invaluable investigations, especially upon the fishes. 

Those of us who had the good fortune to. know Professor Goode personally, recall 
his singular charm of character, his genial interest in the work of others, his true 
scientific spirit. We have thus lost one of our ablest fellow-workers and one of the 


truest and best of men. 
JOHN G. CuRTIS, Chairman. 


CHARLES L. BRistoL, Secretary. 


CIRCULAR ORDER OF THE UNITED STATES COMMISSIONER OF FISH AND FISHERIES. 


UNITED STATES COMMISSION OF FISH AND FISHERIES, 


Washington, D. C., September 8, 1896. 
[Circular Order No. 139.] 


It becomes my painful duty to announce to the employees of the United States 
Commission of Fish and Fisheries the death in this city, on the 6th instant, of Doctor 
George Brown Goode, Assistant Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution, and at one 
time United States Commissioner of Fish and Fisheries. Although his official con- 
nection, strictly speaking, has always been with the former establishment, Doctor 
Goode is best known for his researches and publications on the fishes and fisheries 
of the United States, on which subjects he came to be recognized as the leading 
authority. He first joined in the investigations of the Fish Commission on the 
Atlantic coast in 1872 as a volunteer, and in that capacity continued to participate 
in its scientific work up to the time of Professor Baird’s death in 1887. He was 
appointed to succeed the latter as Fish Commissioner, but relinquished that position 
after a few months, upon the passage of the act giving it an independent status. 
Doctor Goode had charge of the Fishery Division of the Tenth Census, and was also 
the United States Commissioner to the Fishery Expositions at Berlin and London. 
He has been one of the most fruitful and valued contributors to the reports and bul- 
letins of the Fish Commission, and in his death the fishing interests of the country 
have sustained a severe loss, 

J. J. Brice, Commissioner. 


EXTRACTS FROM PROCEEDINGS OF ASSOCIATIONS. 


[From a report of the proceedings of the Seventh Annual General Meeting of the Museums Asso- 
ciation held in Glasgow July 21 to 25, 1896.] 


At the meeting of the Association held in Newcastle last year was read a contribu- 
‘tion from Doctor G. Brown Goode on The principles of Museum Administration ; 
and afterwards the author sent a reprint of the paper to each member of the Associa- 


36 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


tion. ‘To most members he was already known by his contributions to museum 
literature in the Reports of the National Museum of the United States, and other pub- 
lications; but a more personal feeling of intimacy was engendered by the direct 
communication of his thoughts to the Association at Newcastle. It was therefore 
with a feeling of the deepest regret the news of his untimely death was received. 
Doctor Goode died in Washington on 6th of September at the age of forty-five 
years. His early death is a great loss, not only to the United States Museum, but to 
museums in general, for he took a deep and active interest in all things affecting 
their development and well-being. 


[From the proceedings of the Thirtieth Annual Convention, American Institute of Architects, 1896. ] 


Of the corresponding members the institute loses Professor G. Brown Goode, the 
well-known Assistant Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution and Curator of the 
National Museum, who brought out of a chaos of inaccessible treasures the orderly, 
well-arranged, enjoyable, and instructive collection which makes the Smithsonian 
Institution take rank with the finest museums in the world. 


MESSAGES OF SYMPATHY. 


From among a large number of letters received since the death of Mr. 
Goode, appreciating his great services and offering consolation at his 
death, the following few extracts are made. 


Sir William H. Flower, director of the British Museum, said: 


I should like to take part in any tribute to the memory of a man I admired so 
much and was in such sympathy with as Brown Goode. 


Professor Enrico H. Giglioli, of Florence, on October 3, 1896, spoke 
of Mr. Goode as one of the men he loved and esteemed most: 


I feel so crushed [he said] by this terrible blow that I hardly know what I am 
writing. . . . He wasso full of energy and. work it is hard to believe that he is 
now no more. ‘To youallat the National Museum the loss must be immense, but to 
many abroad it isa great and much felt sorrow. To science in America not alone, 
but in the civilized world, his loss is indeed irreparable and will be felt for years. 


The Honorable William Wirt Henry, of the Virginia Historical Society, 
wrote: 


It is a source of great satisfaction to me that I knew Doctor Goode personally and 
was privileged to be associated with him in his work in the patriotic and historical 
societies with which he was connected. No one could know him without being 
impressed with his learning and modesty and the sterling qualities of the man. I 
feel that his death is a loss which will be felt in every path in which he walked, and 
will be mourned by every votary of science. 


M. Henri de Varigny, of Paris, wrote to Secretary Langley: 


I have received the card which notified [me of] the sad news of the death of that 
excellent and most distinguished man, G. Brown Goode. I was already acquainted 
with the fact, and had published a few lines of obituary notice in the Revue Scien- 
tifique, but I have not adequately expressed the feeling of true sorrow I experience 
when I remember that he is no more, and that his writing, activity, and energetic 
kindness have ceased to be. He was very kind and obliging to me, and I shall keep 
a warm remembrance of him. Your loss is a great one. 


Memorial Meeting. 37 


Mr. Valdemar Knudsen, of Honolulu, Hawaii, wrote: 


The card announcing the death of George Brown Goode, LL. D., has just been 
received, and my full sympathy for his loss to your institution and to mankind in 
general is hereby humbly tendered. 


Doctor Karl Mobius, of Berlin, wrote, under date of January 26, 1897: 


The unexpected death of Mr. George Brown Goode has deeply affected me. We 
were in agreeable communication, to the advantage of our museums. We have lost 
in him a distinguished promoter of our scientific efforts. 


Professor Alfonso L. Herrera, of the National Museum in Mexico, 
wrote: 


I have received the notice of the lamented death of George Brown Goode, LL. D., 
and after thanking you for this mark of attention, I offer my most sincere condo- 
lence, and on my part I deplore the loss sustained by science, the National Museum, 
the Smithsonian Institution, and all persons who, like myself, had the good fortune 
to receive consideration from the deceased. I shall never forget his kindness and 
courtesy. 


Mr. John Crawford, of Managua, Nicaragua, wrote: 


On my return here from an excursion among the mountains I learned with much 
surprise and great regret of the death of Doctor G. Brown Goode. On many occa- 
sions he was very patient and kind to me, and no doubt was so to many other natu- 
ralists who, like myself, are far from museums and the advantages of daily conferring 
with and receiving instruction from scientists. I esteemed him highly, and had 
hoped that he would live many years in good health, and in physical and mental 
vigor continue and enjoy his useful life. 


Mr. Julius Neumann, of the Chinese Custom Service, Shasi, China, on 
March 15, 1897, wrote: 


It was with extreme regret that I have just received your card of the 16th of 
November last announcing the death of Professor G. Brown Goode, and I write this 
note to condole with you on the loss your great Institution and science at large 
have to deplore. 

I had the pleasure of meeting the deceased first in London in 1883, and then in 
the following year in New Orleans, and ever since we had kept up friendly relations. 
I shall always fondly cherish his memory. 


The Honorable John Boyd Thacher, of Albany, New York, wrote: 


My personal knowledge of Professor Brown Goode began in 1890, when he gave 
his advice and counsel to the World’s Columbian Commission in classifying the 
various objects into proper departments for exhibition, and more particularly in 
advising and establishing an adequate method in passing judgment upon the exhibits. 
In these matters I can testify to his ability and consummate skill. It was purely 
voluntary service he rendered, and I at once formed—and have since maintained—a 
profound sense of his goodness to those who were officially charged with work for 
. which he knew we were most imperfectly equipped, and to whom he gave not only 
suggestions but detailed and elaborate and finished plans. It is the glory of the 
modern scientist and scholar that he subordinates himself to the accomplishment of 
public work. Our friend never asked to be identified personally with the accom- 
plished thing. It was enough for him to know that some good was done and not 
-that the world should know that it was done by him. The utter absence of selfish- 
ness in any life is worthy of recording in brass or in marble or in formulated words. 


38 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


Doctor Alfred Dugés, of Guanajuato, Mexico, expressed his profound 
regrets. 

Doctor Leon Vaillant, professor of the Museum of Natural History in 
Paris, said that the ichthyological world has experienced a great loss. 

Doctor J. B. de Lacerda, director of the National Museum in Rio de 
Janeiro, and Baron C. R. Osten-Sacken, tendered their sympathy. 

Doctor H. von Ihering, of San Paulo, Brazil, spoke of the loss the 
National Museum suffered in its administrative and scientific interests. 

Doctor R. Schdne, director-general of the Royal Museums in Berlin, 
expressed his sincere regret at the death of this worthy scholar and extends 
his sympathy. 

Professor Pietro Pavesi, director of the Zoological Museum of the Uni- 
versity of Pavia, offered his condolence. A similar message was received 
from the Museum Francisco-Carolinum in Linz. 


MEMOIR OF GEORGE BROWN GOODE, 1851-1806. 


BY 


SAMUEL PIERKRPONT LANGLEY, 


Secretary, Smithsonian Institution. 


39 


. Fate Perit. 


s, 


ees 


» 


MEMOIR OF GEORGE BROWN GOODE, 1851-18099. 


By SAMUEL, PIERPONT LANGLEY, 
Secretary, Smithsonian Institution, 


George Brown Goode was born at New Albany, Indiana, on February 
13, 1851, and died at his home in Washington on September 6, 1896, 
after a life of forty-five years, than which few human lives have ever 
been better filled. 

In those years he won the warm affection of a wide circle of friends 
and the trust and confidence of a multitude of subordinates in the position 
to which his own abilities had carried him. He interested himself and 
interested others in ever-widening circles of research, and such varied 
work that it seemed to those who knew what he was doing, incompre- 
hensible that one man could accomplish so much in one single life; and 
when this came to an end, its cessation was like the loss of a part of them- 
selves to those who knew him best, by whom he is remembered with an 
affection which men rarely gain from one another. 

He was the son of Francis Collier Goode and Sarah Woodruff Crane. 
The Goode family trace their ancestry in this country to John Goode, of 
Whitby, who settled in Virginia prior to 1661.’ 

While still settled in Virginia, many members of the Goode family 
went to the South and West to do pioneer work in building up villages 
and towns on what was then the outskirt of civilization. 

Doctor Goode’s father, Francis Collier Goode, was born in Waynes- 
ville, Ohio, and was a merchant in Ohio and Indiana. In 1857 he retired 
from business, removing to Amenia, New York; subsequently to Mid- 
dletown, Connecticut, and later to Arlington, Florida, and occasionally 
_spent winters in the Bermudas, Tennessee, North Carolina, Virginia, 
and Washington City. 


‘Read before the National Academy of Sciences, April 21, 1897. 

2 The history of this family has been carefully traced by Doctor Goode in Virginia 
Cousins: A Study of the Ancestry and Posterity of John Goode, of Whitby, a Vir- 
ginia Colonist of the Seventeenth Century, with notes upon related families, a key 
to southern genealogy and a history of the English surname Gode, Goad, Goode, or 

.Good from 1148 to 1887, by G. Brown Goode, with a preface by R. A. Brock, Secre- 
tary of the Virginia and Southern Historical Societies. Richmond, Virginia, J. W. 
Randolph & English, MDCCCLXXXVII. 

4I 


42 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


His mother, Sarah Woodruff Crane, was a descendant of Jasper Crane, 
who came to New England during the first ten years of the first settle- 
ment, and was one of the pioneers of Newark, New Jersey. 

Doctor Goode was thus of sturdy American parentage on both sides, 
numbering among his ancestors the founders of the Virginia, Massachu- 
setts, Connecticut, and New Jersey colonies. The family was singularly 
free from foreign mixture, not 10 per cent of the marriages among the 
numerous descendants having been with persons whose ancestors came 
to America later than 1725.’ 

He passed his early childhood in Cincinnati and his later childhood 
and early youth in Amenia, New York, where he was prepared for col- 
lege by'private tutors. His father was a man of studious habits and 
not devoid of an interest in science. He had assembled in his library a 
set of the Smithsonian Reports, which young Goode read as a boy. It 
was through these volumes that he was first attracted to science and to 
the Smithsonian Institution, his boyish ambition being to become con- 
nected with it and to study under Professor Baird. 

He entered Wesleyan University at Middletown, Connecticut, in 1866, 
and was graduated in 1870. Although scarcely more than fifteen when 
he entered college and a little over nineteen years of age at the time of 
his graduation, being the youngest member of the class, his work in the 
studies of the natural history group was so satisfactory as to attract the 
favorable notice of his teachers. ‘The years at Middletown foreshadowed 
the strong love for nature, the museum interest, ability in classification, 
and even the literary talent, which were the distinguishing features of 
all Doctor Goode’s later career. 

When he went to college, his father removed to Middletown and became 
a neighbor to Orange Judd, the pioneer of agricultural journalism in this 
country and closely identified with the advancement of scientific agricul- 
ture. There sprang up between the daughter of Mr. Judd and young 
Goode a- friendship which ripened into love and resulted in their 
marriage, of which I speak here because Doctor Goode himself felt that 
the friendship with Mr. Judd, thus brought. about through his daughter, 
had the largest share in determining his future career. The two young 
people had similar tastes in natural history and outdoor life. As early 
as 1869 Doctor Goode commenced to record in the College Argus and 
the College Review his outdoor rambles. He was at this time a young 
man of stout frame and vigorous health, engaging in all of the athletic 
sports known to college students of that day. 

In 1870he entered Harvard University as a post-graduate student under 
Professor Louis Agassiz, whose genial influence he glowingly describes 
in his youthful letters. 

Mr. Judd had presented to Wesleyan University a building known as 
the Orange Judd Hall of Natural Science. This building was in progress 


! Virginia Cousins, p. xiv. 


Memotr of George Brown Goode. 43 


of erection during Mr. Goode’s student years and was dedicated in the 
commencement week of 1871. 

Before that time [says Professor Rice] the natural history collections of Wesleyan 
University were scattered in several buildings, very imperfectly labeled and arranged, 
and most inaccessible to students or visitors. The spacious rooms in Judd Hall first 
gave the opportunity to arrange and display these collections in such manner as to 
give them the dignity of a museum. 

The work which Doctor Goode had done while a student under Pro- 
fessor Agassiz caused an invitation to be extended to him to undertake 
the arrangement of this collection, and in 1871, when but a little over 
twenty, he was given the title of Curator of the Museum, and undertook 
the installation of the collections. It was in this work that he ‘‘first 
showed that genius for museum administration which he was destined 
afterwards to display in the larger field.’ He retained his official con- 
nection with Middletown until 1877, although the greater part of these 
years was spent either in Washington or in the field. During a portion 
of this time, although absent from Middletown, he received a salary 
from Wesleyan University, and was allowed in exchange to send to the 
Museum duplicates of natural history specimens in the Smithsonian 
Institution, as well as the duplicates of the collections which he made. 
He always retained a strong feeling of affection for his alma mater, and 
founded the Goode prize, intended to stimulate an interest in biologic 
studies. He was one of the editors of the 1873 and 1883 editions of the 
Alumni Record of Wesleyan University, and received the honorary 
degree of Doctor of Laws from that institution in 1893. 

Doctor Goode’s mother died in his infancy, and he found in his father’s 
second wife an affectionate and sympathetic helper, who was a strong 
believer in the possibility of his future scientific career. ‘To her he owed 
his introduction to Professor Baird, whom he first saw at Eastport, Maine, 
in 1872, and this meeting was the turning point of his professional life. 
Through it he not only got the larger opportunities for natural history 
work afforded by the Fish Commission and the Smithsonian Institution, 
but Professor Baird singled him out almost from the first as his chief 
pupil, his intimate friend, his confidential adviser, and his assistant in 
all the natural history work in which he was engaged. ‘The splendid 
advantages which Professor Baird accorded his young friend were repaid 
by an intense devotion. 

Mr. Goode said once that he could lay down his life for such a man, 
and indeed he almost did so, for his originally robust health was impaired 
by this devotion to Professor Baird’s service, particularly at the Centen- 
nial Exposition of 1876, which he left invalided, and the effects of his 
overwork in which left him a weaker man through his after life. The 
death of Professor Baird in 1887 affected him so deeply that it was not 
until 1895 that he was once heard to say that he had but just recovered 
‘from the loss. 


44 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


He became in 1872 a volunteer in the United States Fish Commission, 
the year after the organization of that Bureau, and he continued this 
work, making collections in 1872 at Eastport, Maine, in 1873 in Casco 
Bay, and in 1874 at Noank, on Long Island Sound. The years from 
1872 to 1878 show collections of fishes made by him at the points named, 
as well as in Bermuda, Florida, Connecticut, and other places. Nearly 
twenty papers and articles relating to the Fish Commission and to fish- 
eries appeared from his pen during the first four years of this voluntary 
association with the Fish Commission. He was interested not only in 
the scientific side of ichthyological work, but devoted great attention to 
the economic side. It was in 1877 that he found his first specimen of a 
deep-sea fish and laid the foundation of the studies which culminated in 
the splendid memoir on Oceanic Ichthyology by himself and Doctor 
Bean. During these years with Professor Baird he became experienced 
in all the work of the Fish Commission, and upon his death was appointed 
Commissioner of Fisheries by the President. ‘The position up to this 
time had been an honorary one, but Mr. Goode informed President 
Cleveland that the work had grown to such an extent that it was not 
possible for any person who was actively engaged in the Smithsonian 
Institution or elsewhere to continue it. President Cleveland urged him 
several times to permanently accept the position of Commissioner of Fish- 
eries, and the Committee on Appropriations of Congress had provided a 
salary which was larger than the one which Mr. Goode was receiving or 
ever did receive, but he resolutely declined, asserting that his life’s ambi- 
tion had been to become associated with the Smithsonian Institution; 
that his heart was in the Museum, and that he could not give it up. As 
related to his work in the Fish Commission, the facts may be mentioned 
that in 1877 he was employed by the Department of State on statistical 
work in connection with the Halifax Commission, and in 1879 and 1880 
he was in charge of the Fisheries Division of the Tenth Census. His 
administrative abilities were strongly brought out in the organization of 
this work. Professor Henry F. Osborn describes his method as follows: 

Special agents were sent out, to every part of the coast and to the Great Lakes, to 
gather information. Goode worked at it himself on Cape Cod, and manifested the 
saine enthusiasm as in every other piece of work he took up. He interested himself 
in getting together a collection representing the methods of the fisheries and the 
habits of the fishermen. Neglecting neither the most trivial nor important objects, 


branching out into every collateral matter, he showed his grasp both of principles 
and of details. 


He was United States commissioner to the Internationale Fischerei 
Ausstellung in 1880 at Berlin and to the International Fisheries Exposi- 
tion held at London in 1883. From circular order No. 139, issued by 
Commander J. J. Brice, United States Commissioner of Fish and Fish- 
eries, I extract the following sentences: 


Doctor Goode is best known for his researches and publications on the fishes and 
fisheries of the United States, on which subjects he came to be recognized as the 


Memotr of George Brown Goode. 45 


leading authority. . . . He has been one of the most fruitful and valued con- 
tributors to the reports and bulletins of the Fish Commission, and in his death the 
fishing interests of the country have sustained a severe loss. 

As I have before said, his connection with the Smithsonian Institution 
followed shortly after the acquaintance with Professor Baird, who invited 
him to spend the winter of 1873 in Washington for the purpose of arrang- 
ing the ichthyological specimens and with the understanding that as a 
payment for this service he was to be allowed to select duplicates for the 
museum at Middletown. At that time he had the title of Assistant Cura- 
tor, which was later changed to Curator, and although the relations to 
Middletown continued, the ties with the Institution were becoming stronger 
and stronger. He now met Professor Henry for the first time, and became 
one of the small coterie of Smithsonian men who at that time lived in the 
Smithsonian building and formed a part of the hospitable household which 
Professor Henry maintained. In these early days the staff was an 
extremely small one, being only thirteen persons, including honorary 
collaborators and subordinates. Doctor Goode threw himself into this 
work with uncalculating devotion. Professor Baird’s duties were becom- 
ing more and more numerous, and after he became Secretary of the Insti- 
tution Doctor Goode took the Museum work upon his willing shoulders. 
In 1881, when the new Museum building was completed and the United 
States National Museum really organized, Mr. Goode, then thirty years 
of age, was made Assistant Director. In that year he prepared a circular, 
known as Circular No. 1 of the National Museum, which set forth a 
scheme of administration for the Museum so comprehensive in its scope, 
so exact in its details, so practical in its ideas that it is with but few 
modifications still the guide for the Museum staff. On January 12, 1887, 
Professor Baird, whose health was then failing, appointed Mr. Goode as 
Assistant Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution in charge of the National 
Museum, and from that time until his death he had the fullest charge of 
the entire administration of the Museum. 

It is hard to say whether Mr. Goode was best known as a museum 
director or a naturalist. I, of course, had more occasion to see his work 
from the administrative side. It would be impossible to understand his 
success in this field without thinking of the character of the man, and 
here I may repeat what I have said elsewhere, that if there was one 
quality more than another which formed the basis of his character it was 
sincerity—a sincerity which was the ground of a trust and confidence 
such as could be instinctively given even from the first only to an 
absolutely loyal and truthful nature. 

I do not know whether a power of reading character is more intuitive 
or acquired, but at any rate without it men may be governed, but not in 
harmony, and must be driven rather than led. Doctor Goode was in 
. this sense a leader, quite apart from his scientific competence. Every 
member of the force he controlled, not only among his scientific asso- 


46 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


ciates, but down to the humblest employees of the Museum, was an indi- 
vidual to him, with traits of character which were his own and not 
another’s, and which were recognized in all dealings, and in this I think 
he was peculiar, for I have known no man who seemed to possess this 
sympathetic insight in such a degree, and certainly it was one of the 
sources of his strength. 

I shall have given, however, a wrong idea of him if I leave anyone 
under the impression that this sympathy led to weakness of rule. He 
knew how to say ‘‘no,’’ and said it as often as any other, and would rep- 
rehend, where occasion called, in terms the plainest and most uncompro- 
mising a man could use, speaking so when he thought it necessary, even 
to those whose association was voluntary, but who somehow were not 
alienated as they would have been by such censure from another. ‘‘ He 
often refused me what I most wanted,’’ said one of his staff to me; ‘‘ but 
I never went to sleep without having in my own mind forgiven him.’’ 

I have spoken of some of the moral qualities which made all rely upon 
him and which were the foundation of his ability to deal with men. To 
them was joined that scientific knowledge without which he could not 
have been a museum administrator; but even with this knowledge he 
could not have been what he was, except from the fact that he loved the 
Museum and its administration above every other pursuit, even, I think, 
above his own special branch of biological science. He was perhaps a 
man of the widest interests I have ever known, so that whatever he 
was speaking of at any moment seemed to be the thing he knew best. 
It was often hard to say, then, what love predominated; but I think 
that he had, on the whole, no pleasure greater than that in his Museum 
administration, and that, apart from his family interests and joys, this 
was the deepest love of all. He refused advantageous offers to leave it, 
though I ought to gratefully add here, that his knowledge of my reliance 
upon him and his unselfish desire to aid me were also among his deter- 
mining motives in remaining. They were natural ones in such a man. 

What were the results of this devotion may be comprehensively seen 
in the statement that in the year in which he was first enrolled among 
the officers of the Museum, the entries of collections numbered less than 
200,000, and the staff, including honorary collaborators and all subordi- 
nates, thirteen persons, and by comparing these early conditions with 
what they became under his subsequent management. 

Professor Baird at the first was an active manager, but from the time 
that he became Secretary of the Institution he devolved more and more 
of the Museum duties on Doctor Goode, who for nine years preceding 
his death was practically in entire charge of it. It is strictly within the 
truth, then, to say that the changes which have taken place in the Museum 
in that time are more his work than any other man’s, and when we find 
that the number of persons employed has grown from thirteen to over 
two hundred, and the number of specimens from 200,000 to over 3,000,000, 


=! 


Memorr of George Brown Goode. 47 


and consider that what the Museum now is, its scheme and arrangement, 
with almost all which make it distinctive, are chiefly Doctor Goode’s, we 
have some of the evidence of his administrative capacity. He was fitted 
to rule and administer both men and things, and the Museum under his 
management was, as some one has called it, ‘‘ A house ftll of ideas and 
a nursery of living thought.’’ 

His success of administration [says Professor Osborn] also came partly from an 
instinctive knowledge of human nature. . . . He sought out the often latent best 
qualities of the men around him and developed them. When things were out of 
joint and did not move his way, he waited with infinite patience for the slow opera- 
tion of time and common sense to set them right. He was singularly considerate of 
opinion, . . . fertile of original ideasand suggestions, full of invention and of new 
expedients, studying the best models at home and abroad, but never bound by any 
traditions of system or of classification. . . . To all his work also he brought 
a refined artistic taste, shown in his methods of printing and labeling, as well as in 
his encouragement of the artistic, and, therefore, the truthful and realistic develop- 
ment of taxidermy in the arrangement of natural groups of animals. ‘To crown all, 
like Baird, he entered into the largest conception of the wide-reaching responsibili- 
ties of his office under the Government, fully realizing that he was not at the 
head of a university or of a metropolitan museum, but of the Museum of a great nation. 
Every reasonable request from another institution met a prompt response. : 
Not the advancement of Washington science, but of American science, was his 
dominating idea. 


There was no subject in connection with the administration of the 
Museum to which he did not at some time or other give his personal 
attention. He had a quick eye for color and for form, understood the art 
of decorating and case building, and had besides a special knowledge of 
subjects so widely remote from his own biologic interests that it is a 
question whether a new species or a new musical instrument gave him 
the greater pleasure. So fully could I rely on his judgment in all things, 
that even in matters not connected with the Museum I frequently sought 
the benefit of his advice, and this was sure to be sound, whether it related 
to. the typography or paper of a new volume of the publications, or to 
some weighty question of policy. It is difficult to single out from among 
the manifold matters relating to the Institution proper which were con- 
fided to him one single thing. I can not, however, but recall the fact that 
he seemed to me, both because of the soundness of his judgment and the 
wide domain of science with which he was acquainted, the fittest person 
to place in charge of the Hodgkins award made two years ago. To this 
entire work, from the time of Mr. Hodgkins’s gift down to the closing 
of the award, Mr. Goode gave unremitting and zealous attention, having 
served as chairman both of the preliminary committee and the committee 
on award. 

The field of natural history, of antiquities, of art, of books, is so vast 
that a mere assemblage of objects, of books, of prints, of engravings, is 
not in itself significant. Collecting is an art which many essay but few 
‘ attain. Mr. Goode was eminently a collector. As early as 1872 we find 


48 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


him collecting the fishes of the Bermudas, which he worked up in a cata- 
logue, giving in each case, in addition to characteristics previously noted, 
descriptions of the colors of the fishes while living, notes on the size and 
proportions, observations of habits, hints in reference to the origin and 
meaning of their popular names, and notes upon modes of capture of 
economic value. ‘The same careful methods of collection he followed in 
the subsequent expeditions which he undertook in the field. It was not 
alone in natural history, however, that this talent for collecting displayed 
itself. Every possible sort of specimen or information which was at 
hand he collected. He would bring back from every exposition which 
he attended methodical collections, frequently of materials overlooked by 
others. Every visit to a foreign country resulted in the bringing back 
of a collection, not of miscellaneous objects, but of a series which could 
themselves be placed on exhibition. ‘These might be musical instru- 
ments, ecclesiastical art, early printed books, medals, or ivories, and the 
same taste and discrimination and good judgment were displayed in their 
selection. He collected, however, not only objects, but also words and 
ideas. From the assembling of the common names of plants and animals 
in America there grew a large collection of Americanisms, probably larger 
than any single collection published. Portraits of scientific men, portraits 
of Washington and Jefferson, autographs, Confederate imprints, Ameri- 
cana, American scientific text-books—these are but a few of the fields 
in which Doctor Goode collected. 

He was a naturalist in the broadest sense of that word, following in 
the footsteps of Agassiz and Baird. 

He had [says Doctor Gill] acquaintance with several classes of the animal king- 
dom, and especially with the vertebrates. He even published several minor contri- 
butions on herpetology, the voices of crustaceans, and other subjects. . . . The 
flowering plants also enlisted much of his attention, and his excursions into the fields 
and woods were enlivened by a knowledge of the objects he met with. 

The designation naturalist [says Professor Osborn] was one which Goode richly 
earned and which he held most dear, and our deep sorrow is that his activity as nat- 
uralist extended only over a quarter of acentury. . . . Asa naturalist Goode did 
not close any of the windows opening out into nature. His breadth of spirit in public 
affairs displayed itself equally in his methods of field and sea work and in the variety 
of his observations and writings. While fishes became his chief interest, he knew 
all the Eastern species of birds after identifying and arranging the collection in his 
college museum. He loved plants, and in the later years of his life took great 
pleasure in the culture of the old-fashioned garden around his house. . . . Many 
of his briefer papers deal directly with the biological problems which attracted his 
interest, especially among reptiles and fishes, touching such questions as migration, 
coloring, albinism, mimicry, parasitism, feeding and breeding habits, the relation of 
forest protection to the protection of fishes. 


Perhaps no one can be a ‘‘naturalist’’ in the larger sense without 
being directly a lover of Nature and of all natural sights and sounds. 
One of his family says: 


He taught us all the forest trees, their fruits and flowers in season, and to know 
them when bare of leaves by their shapes; all the wayside shrubs, and even the 


Memorr of George Brown Goode.. 49 


flowers of the weeds; all the wild birds and their notes, and the insects. His ideal 
of an old age was to have a little place of his own in a mild climate, surrounded by 
his books for rainy days, and friends who cared for plain living and high thinking, 
with a chance to help someone poorer than he. 


He was a loving and quick observer, and in these simple, natural joys, 
his studies were his recreations, and were closely connected with his 
literary pursuits. 

He was of course first and foremost an ichthyologist, and this through 
no lack of sympathy with the larger field, but because of the recognition 
of the fact that the larger field could not be successfully covered by 
one man. 

His adherence to this subject as a specialty was undoubtedly deter- 
mined by his long and intimate connection with the Fish Commission 
during the period of greatest advancement in methods of deep-sea explo- 
ration, the rich collections of fishes derived from that source being placed at 
his command. The novelties of structure and environment presented by 
this material, ever increasing as the work progressed, proved an attraction 
too strong to be resisted, even in the face of his varied official duties, 
and caused him to become distinctively a student of the marine forms. 

His observations were not confined to any single branch of the subject, 
but were given the widest latitude that his time permitted. He was the 
discoverer of many new and strange species and an acknowledged authority 
on classification; but he took perhaps the greatest interest in questions 
regarding the geographical and bathymetrical distribution of fishes, a 
field in which his opportunities for investigation had been unexcelled. 
The color of fishes had also been a favorite study with him, and he had 
paid attention to many points in their morphology and in the functions 
of special organs. He was especially well versed in the literature of 
ichthyology from the earliest times, and-after Professor Baird, was the 
most eminent exponent in this country of the benefits to be secured 
to the practical fisheries through the application of scientific teachings. 

Doctor Gill, in reviewing his scientific career, said: 


A Catalogue of the Fishes of the Bermudas,' published in 1876, furnished addi- 
tional evidence of knowledge of the literature of his subject and ability to use it to 
advantage in the discussion of mooted questions, and it also evinced his power of 
observation. 

In the same year, 1876, appeared another work which, to a still greater degree, 
rendered manifest those same mental characteristics. The work was only a cata- 
logue, but perhaps from no other publication can some intellectual qualities be so 
readily and correctly gauged by a competent judge asan elaborate catalogue. Powers 
of analysis and synthesis, and the ability to weigh the relative values of the material 
at hand, may make a ‘‘mere catalogue’’ a valuable epitome of a collection and of a 
science. Such a production was the Classification of the Collection to illustrate the 


‘Catalogue of the Fishesof the Bermudas. Based chiefly on the collections of the 
United States National Museum. Washington: Government Printing Office, 1876 
(8°, pp. (2) 1-82, Bulletin United States National Museum, No. 5). 


NAT MUS 97, PT 2 4 


50 Memortal of George Brown Goode. 


Animal Resources of the United States,t a work of 126 pages; three years later this 
catalogue served as the basis for and was elaborated and expanded into a large Cata- 
logue of the Collection to illustrate the Animal Resources and the Fisheries of the 
United States,? a volume of 351 pages. These catalogues were for the tentative and 
adopted arrangement of material exhibited by the Smithsonian Institution and the 
United States Fish Commission at the International Exhibition, 1876. 

It was the ability that was manifested in these catalogues and the work incidental 
to their preparation that especially arrested the attention of Professor Baird and 
marked the author as one well adapted for the direction of a great museum. For 
signal success in such direction special qualifications are requisite. Only some of 
them are a mind well trained in analytical as well as synthetic methods, an artistic 
sense, critical ability, and multifarious knowledge, but above all the knowledge of 
men and how to deal with them. Perhaps no one has ever combined in more har- 
monious proportions, such qualifications than G. Brown Goode. In him the National 
Museum of the United States and the world at large have lost one of the greatest of 
museum administrators. 

As a naturalist, the attention of Doctor Goode was especially directed to and even 
concentrated on the fishes. His memoirs, contributed mostly to the Proceedings of 
the United States National Museum, were numerous and chiefly descriptive of new 
species. (For many of these he had, as a collaborator Doctor Tarleton Bean, then 
the curator of fishes of the United States National Museum.) Some of the memoirs, 
however, dealt with special groups, as the Menhaden (1879), Ostraciontidze (1880), 
Carangidze (1881), the Swordfishes (1881), and the Kel (1882). His monograph of 
the Menhaden (4vevoortia tyrannus) contributed originally to the Report of the 
United States Commissioner of Fisheries3 and then published as a separate work 4— 
a large volume of nearly 550 pages and with 30 plates—is a model of critical treat- 
ment of information collected from all quarters. But his most important contribu- 
tions were published as official Government reports and were the results of investiga- 
tions especially undertaken for such reports. Especially noteworthy were the 
volumes comprising the results of the census of 1880, 

The 1880 census was planned and carried out on an unusual scale. For the fish- 
eries the United States Commission of Fish and Fisheries cooperated and Doctor 
Goode had general charge of the entire work. The assistants and special agents 


‘International Exhibition, 1876. Board in behalf of United States Executive 
Departments. Classification of the Collection to illustrate the Animal Resources of 
the United States. A list of substances derived from the animal kingdom, with 
synopsis of the useful and injurious animals and a classification of the methods 
of capture and utilization. Washington: Government Printing Office. 1876. (8° 
pp- 126, a Second edition with supplem<ntary title as Bulletin No. 6, United States 
National Museum). 

2International Exhibition, 1876. Catalogue of the Collection to illustrate the 
Animal Resources and the Fisheries of the United States, exhibited at Philadelphia 
in 1876 by the Smithsonian Institution and the United States Fish Commission, and 
forming a part of the United States National Museum. Washington: Government 
Printing Office. 1879. (8°, pp. 351. (1)—Bulletin United States National Museum, 
No. 14). z 

3The Natural and Economical History of the American Menhaden. In Report 
United States Commission of Fish and Fisheries, Part v, 1879, Appendix A, pp. 1-529, 
pls. I-XxxI (xxx canceled), pp. 194-267 by Professor W. O. Atwater. 

4American Fisheries. A History of the Menhaden by G. Brown Goode, with an 
account of the Agricultural Uses of Fish by W. O. Atwater. . . . And an intro- 
duction, bringing the subject down to date. Thirty plates. New York: Orange 
Judd Company, 1880, (8° pp. x (i), WI-XII, 1-529 (1); 31 pls., pl. 30 canceled), 


Memoir of George Brown Goode. 51 


were consequently selected with judgment and the results were very valuable. 
The huge mass of statistics was digested and condensed in seven large quarto 
volumes representing five sections separately devoted to special branches of the 
subject.* 

Doctor Goode’s cares were mainly concentrated on the first section, treating of 
the Natural History of Aquatic Animals, which was discussed in over g00 pages of 
text and illustrated by 277 plates. This work was by far the most complete survey 
of the economical fishes of the country that had ever appeared and has since been 
the most prized; it led to another. 

After the appearance of the census volumes, Doctor Goode was urged to prepare a 
work for popular use. His consent to do so was followed by a volume, entitled 
American Fishes, A Popular Treatise upon the Game and Food Fishes of North 
America,? published by the Standard Book Company of New York. Inasmuch as 
none of the previous popular works on the American fishes had emanated from men 
of scientific eminence, it scarcely need be added that the new work had no rival in 
the field, so far as accurate information and details of habits were involved. 

A short time previously Doctor Goode had also prepared the text to accompany a 
series of twenty large folio colored portraits by an eminent artist, Mr. S. A. Kil- 
bourne, of the principal Game Fishes of the United States.3 

Never had investigations of the deep sea been conducted with such assiduity and 
skill as during the last two decades. The chief honors of the explorations were 
carried off by the British and American governments. As the fishes obtained 
by the vessels of the United States Fish Commission were brought in, they were 
examined by Doctor Goode (generally in company with Doctor Bean) and duly 
described. At length Doctors Goode and Bean combined together data respecting 
all the known forms occurring in the abysmal depths of the ocean and also those 
of the open sea, and published a résumé of the entire subject in two large volumes 
entitled Oceanic Ichthyology. 

This was a fitting crown to the work on which they had been engaged so long 
and the actual publication only preceded Doctor Goode’s death by a few weeks. 

But the published volumes did not represent all the work of Doctor Goode on the 
abyssalian fishes. He had almost completed an elaborate memoir on the distribu- 


*The Fisheries and Fishery Industry of the United States. Prepared through the 
cooperation of the Commissioner of Fisheries and the Superintendent of the Tenth 
Census. By George Brown Goode, Assistant Director of the United States National 
Museum, and a staff of associates. Washington: Government Printing Office, 1884 
(-1887, 5 sections in 7 volumes). Section I, Natural History of Aquatic Animals, 
was mainly prepared by Doctor Goode. s 

?American Fishes. A Popular Treatise upon the Game and Food Fishes of North 
America, with especial reference to habits and methods of capture,. By G. Brown 
Goode. With numerous illustrations. New York; Standard Book Company. 18838. 
(8°, xvr-+ 496 pp., colored frontispiece. ) 

3Game Fishes of the United States. By S. A. Kilbourne. Text by G. Brown Goode. 
New York: Published by Charles Scribner’s Sons. 1879-1881. (Folio, 46 pp., 20 
plates and map.—published in ten parts, each with 2 plates, lithographs in water 
color, and four page folio of text. ) 

‘Smithsonian Institution. United States National Museum. Special Bulletin. 
Oceanic Ichthyology. A Treatise on the Deep-sea and Pelagic Fishes of the World, 
based chiefly upon the collections made by the steamers Blake, Albatross, and Fish 
Hawk in the Northwestern Atlantic, with an atlas containing 417 figures, by George 
Brown Goode, Ph. D., LL. D., and Tarleton H. Bean, M. D., M. S. Washington : 
Government Printing Office. 1895. 2vols., 4°; I, xxxv + 26*, 553 pp.; II, xxiii + 26* 


pp., 123 pls. 


52 Memorval of George Brown Goode. 


tion of those fishes, and, contrary to the conclusions of former laborers in the same 
field, had recognized for them a number of different faunal areas. It is to be hoped 
that this may yet be given to the world. 

Morphological and descriptive ichthyology were not cultivated to the exclusion 
of what is regarded as more practical features. In connection with his official 
duties as an officer of the United States Fish Commission he studied the subject of 
pisciculture in all its details. Among his many contributions to the subject are one 
on The First Decade of the United States Commission, its plan of work and accom- 
plished results, scientific and economical (1880), another treating of the Epochs in 
the History of Fish Culture (1881), and two encyclopedic articles—The Fisheries of 
the World (1882), and the one entitled Pisciculture, in the Encyclopedia Britannica 
(1885). 

The great work of his life, Oceanic Ichthyology [says Doctor Jordan], was, how- 
ever, written during the period of his directorship of the National Museum, and it 
was published but a month before his death. Almost simultaneously with this were 
other important publications of the National Museum, which were his also in a 
sense, for they would never have been undertaken except for his urgent wish and 
encouragement. If a personal word may be pardoned, The Fishes of North and 
Middle America, which closely followed Oceanic Ichthyology, would never have 
been written except for my friend’s repeated insistence and generous help. 

The first recorded scientific paper of Doctor Goode is a notet On the Occurrence of 
the Bill-fish in fresh Water in the Connecticut River. The next is a critical discus- 
sion of the answers to the question Do Snakes Swallow their Young? In this paper 
he shows that there is good reason to believe that in certain viviparous snakes, the 
young seek refuge inthe stomach of the mother when frightened, and that they 
come out unharmed when the reason for their retreat has passed. 

The first of the many technical and descriptive papers on fishes was the Catalogue 
of the Fishes of the Bermudas,” published in 1876. This is a model record of field 
observations and is one of the best of local catalogues. Doctor Goode retained his 
interest in this outpost of the great West Indian fauna, and from time to time 
recorded the various additions made to his first Bermudan catalogue. 

After this followed a large number of papers on fishes, chiefly descriptions of 
species or monographs of groups. The descriptive papers were nearly all written in 
association with his excellent friend, Doctor ‘Tarleton H. Bean, then Curator of Fishes 
in the National Museum. 

In monographic work Doctor Goode took the deepest interest, and he delighted 
especially in the collection of historic data concerning groups of species, The 
quaint or poetical features of such work were never overlooked by him. Notable 
among these monographs are those of the Menhaden, the Trunk-fishes, and the Sword- 
fishes. 

The economic side of science also interested him more and more. ‘That scientific 
knowledge could add to human wealth or comfort was no reproach in his eyes. In 
his notable monograph of the Menhaden$ the economic value as food or manure of 
this plebeian fish received the careful attention which he had given to the problems 
of pure science. 

Doctor Goode’s power in organizing and coordinating practical investigations was 
shown in his monumental work‘ on the American Fisheries for the Tenth Census 


t American Naturalist, V, p. 487. 

* Bulletin No. 5, United States National Museum. 

3The Natural and Economical History of the American Menhaden. In Report of 
United States Commission of Fish and Fisheries, Part 5. Washington, 1879. 

4The Fisheries and Fishery Industry of the United States. Prepared through the 
cooperation of the Commissioner of Fisheries and the Superintendent of the Tenth 
Census, Washington, 1884. 


Memoir of George Brown Goode. 53 


in 1880. The preparation of the record of the fisheries and associated aquatic indus- 
tries was placed in his hands by Francis A. Walker, Superintendent of the Census. 
Under Doctor Goode’s direction skilled investigators were sent to every part of the 
coast and inland waters of the country. 


His American Fishes, a popular treatise upon the game and food fishes 
of North America, published in 1888, is deserving of a special mention 
both because of the charming literary style in which it is written as well 
as its scientific accuracy and excellence. The wealth and aptness of the 
chapter headings of this book show that Mr. Goode’s wide reading was 
associated with everything which could illustrate his science on the 
literary side. He had a knowledge of everything even remotely con- 
nected with his ichthyological researches, from St. Anthony’s Sermon 
to Fishes, to the literature of fish cookery, while in one of his earliest 
papers, written at nineteen, his fondness for Isaac Walton and _ his 
familiarity with him are evident. 

While never claiming the title of anthropologist, he was yet a close 
student of the anthropological and ethnological work in this country and 
abroad, and it is not too much to say that no professional anthropologist 
had a higher ideal of what his science might come to be or exercised a 
more discriminating criticism on its present methods and conditions than 
did Doctor Goode. He was, moreover, not only interested in the bio- 
logical problems of the anthropologist, but in technology and the history 
of art. The history of human invention and archeology were equally in 
his mind, and his suggestiveness in each of these fields could be attested 
by all of the anthropologists with whom he came in contact. 

It would be difficult [says Professor Mason] to find among those who are pro- 
fessional anthropologists a man who had a more exalted idea of what this science 
ought to be. There is not, perhaps, another distinguished scholar who has endeav- 


ored to collect into one great anthropological scheme all of the knowledge of all 
men in all ages of the world and in all stages of culture. 


Doctor Goode was peculiarly related to the management of expositions 
and did more than any other person in America to engraft upon them 
museum ideas and widen their scope from the merely commercial and 
industrial to the educational and scientific. 

His first experience in this field was in 1876, at the Centennial Exhi- 
bition held in Philadelphia. Professor Baird was in charge of the exhibits 
of the Smithsonian Institution and Fish Commission, and being much 
occupied at the time with other matters, the greater part of the installa- 
tion and other work connected with the exhibit was placed under the 
immediate supervision of Mr. Goode. The work done by the Smithso- 
nian and Government departments at this exhibition was pioneer work, 
it being the first international exhibition in which the United States Gov- 
ernment was engaged. It is not too much to say that the arrangement 
of the Smithsonian exhibit at Philadelphia was the model on which all 
‘subsequent exhibits of the kind were based, and that the classification, 
the installation, and the arrangement have had a lasting influence on 


54 Memorral of George Brown Goode. 


exhibition work everywhere. But every administrative activity of this 
sort was sure to result in some literary product, so that we find in 1876 
Mr. Goode published A Classification of the Collections to illustrate the 
Animal Resources of the United States: A list of substances derived 
from the animal kingdom, with synopsis of the useful and injurious ani- 
mals, and a classification of the methods of capture and utilization. ‘This 
work was afterwards published in an enlarged form as a bulletin of the 
National Museum. 

His services as commissioner for the United States Government at the 
Fisheries Exhibition of Berlin in 1880 and London in 1883 have already 
been alluded to. ‘These, too, resulted in several articles in German and in 
a bulletin of the Museum, while several addresses and papers delivered 
at the Conferences of the International Fisheries Exhibition in London’ 
were published in the papers of the conferences, and full reports were 
made by Doctor Goode on his return to this country and published at 
the Government Printing Office. 

He was the representative of the Smithsonian Institution at all the 
subsequent exhibitions held in this country—Louisville, 1884; New 
Orleans, 1885; Cincinnati, 1888; Chicago, 1893, and Atlanta, 1895— 
serving also as a commissioner and for a time acting Commissioner-Gen- 
eral to the Columbian Exposition held at Madrid in 1892. 

The exhibits made under his direction were never repetitions. Each 
one contained new material never shown before, and exhibited the prog- 
ress of the Institution and Museum, as well as the advances made in 
the arts of taxidermy, installation, and labeling. Mr. Goode, too, 
always bore in mind the local interest, and endeavored to show speci- 
mens and materials which would be instructive to persons residing in the 
neighborhood of the place at which the exposition was held. ‘Thus at 
Cincinnati objects were prominent which related to the Ohio Valley, for 
Madrid he prepared an exhibit to illustrate the conditions of human and 
animal life in America at the time of the Spanish discovery, whilst at 
Atlanta especial stress was laid on showing the fauna, flora, archzeology, 
and mineral resources of the South Atlantic States. He prepared the 
report on the Madrid Exposition, and at the request of the Government 
Commission drew up a provisional classification for the Chicago Exposi- 
tion, which, while not formally accepted, was used throughout in the 
official classification, many pages being copied without a change. For 
the Chicago, as well as the Atlanta Exposition, he prepared a carefully 
written catalogue, and for the latter an excellently condensed sketch of 
the Smithsonian Institution. 

Nowhere were Mr. Goode’s administrative talents more strongly 
shown than in an exhibition. The plans of the floor space, the cases, 
the specimens were all carefully arranged in advance. Boxes were 
especially made of lumber which could be utilized for cases or platforms. 
Cases were marked, and not very long before the opening of the exposi- 


Memoir of George Brown Goode. 55 


tion the entire mass would be deposited on the bare space assigned to 
the Smithsonian exhibit. Usually other exhibitors had their material 
half arranged by this time, and the fear was expressed by sympathetic 
bystanders that the Smithsonian would not be ready. ‘The cases would 
be unpacked and the specimens put in them in whatever position they 
happened to stand, and up to the last day all would seem to be in con- 
fusion; but Doctor Goode knew his resources and his men as a general 
knows his army. Suddenly all detailed work would come to an end, 
and in the course of a few hours, as if by magic, the entire exhibit would 
be put in place. He had a pafdonable pride in this sort of generalship, 
for whether at Chicago or Atlanta it had never failed him, and it earned 
the highest encomiums at Berlin, London, and Madrid. 

Doctor Goode’s services at these various expositions were recognized 
by diplomas and medals, and from the Spanish Government he received 
the order of Isabella the Catholic, with the grade of commander. 

I have already spoken of Mr. Goode’s administrative qualities as shown 
in his management of the National Museum; but his contributions to 
museum administration and the history of museums were not confined to 
his own work. From all parts of America and even as far distant as 
Australia his opinion was sought with regard to the plans for museum 
buildings as well as on minor matters of installation. All requests for 
such information and advice were fully answered in minute detail. 

It was into his papers on museums that some of his best thoughts went, 
and it was there that we find epigrammatic statements which are con- 
stantly quoted by all interested in the matter. 

The first paper by him on this subject appeared in the College Argus, 
March 22, 1871. It was entitled Our Museum, and was a description of 
the collectionin Judd Hall. This article indicated plainly the museum 
instinct, for it was largely intended to make known the deficiencies in 
the collection, and pointed out how students and professors could make 
these good on their summer excursions. He also published a guide to 
this museum. 

In 1888 he read before the American Historical Association a paper 
entitled Museum History and Museums of History. Here he traced 
the growth of the museum idea from the beginning down to the present 
time, repeating his now oft-quoted phrase, ‘‘An efficient educational 
museum may be described as a collection of instructive labels, each illus- 
trated by a weli-selected specimen.’’ Atlases of ethnological portraits 
and works like those of Audubon he described as ‘‘not books, but 
musetim specimens, masquerading in the dress of books.’’ 

Even more forcible was a lecture delivered before the Brooklyn Insti- 
tute in 1889, entitled Museums of the Future. ‘‘The museum of the 
past,’’ he wrote, ‘‘must be set aside, reconstructed, transformed from a 
cemetery of bric-a-brac into a nursery of living thoughts.’’ . . . ‘‘The 
people’s museum should be much more than a house full of specimens 


56 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


in glass cases. It should be a house full of ideas, arranged with the 
strictest attention to system.’’ . . . ‘‘A finished museum is a dead 
museum, and a dead museum is a useless museum.”’ 

Most noteworthy, however, was his paper contributed to the Museums 
Association of Great Britain in 1895, entitled The Principles of Museum 
Administration. This was a carefully prepared codification of ‘“‘the 
accepted principles of museum administration,’’ which Mr. Goode hoped 
would ‘‘be the cause of much critical discussion.’? The ideas were- 
presented in the form of aphorisms and were exceptionally clear cut, 
ending with the assertion that ‘‘the degree of civilization to which any 
nation, city, or province has attained is best shown by the character of 
its public museums and the liberality with which they are maintained.” 

This paper was warmly welcomed by museum experts, many of 
whom testified by their letters the interest they had in the clear pre- 
sentation of the principles which should guide the museum administrator. 
At the 1896 meeting of the same association Mr. Bather said: ‘‘ When I 
read the magnificently exhaustive address by Doctor G. Brown Goode, 
published in our last report, it was manifest that all the ideas I had ever 
had were anticipated in that masterly production ;’’ whilst an obituary 
note in the same volume says, ‘‘ His early death is a great loss, not only 
to the United States Museum, but to museums in general, for he took a 
deep and active interest in all things affecting their development and 
well-being.” 

The Manchester Guardian, September 20, 1896, says: 

He was a recognized authority on all matters affecting museum administration, 
and in this capacity he last year wrote a paper on the principles of museum manage- 
ment and economy, which was brought before the annual congress of the Museums 
Association at Newcastle, and has since attracted much attention as an admirable 
exposition of the general theory of administration applicable to museum work in all 
its branches. It is of interest to note that Doctor Goode’s definition of a museum is 
an institution for the preservation of those objects which best illustrate the phenom- 
ena of nature and the works of man, and the utilization of these for the increase of 
knowledge and for the culture and enlightenment of the people. In this spirit 
Doctor Goode worked, and he not only achieved much in his own country, but was 


also ever ready to cordially cooperate with foreign kindred institutions, especially 
those in England, for the advancement of museum work as a means of education. 


These activities would have been sufficient for an ordinary man, but in 
addition he was the historian of American science. 

In 1886 he delivered, as president of the Biological Society of Wash- 
ington, an address entitled The Beginnings of Natural History in Amer- 
ica, tracing it from Thomas Harriott, who came to this country in 1585, 
reciting the scientific labors of Captain John Smith, John Ray, Thomas 
Jefferson, and a host of others. The spirit which actuated this address 
is well illustrated in the following paragraph: 

It seems to me unfortunate, therefore, that we should allow the value of the labors 


of our predecessors to be depreciated, or to refer to the naturalists of the last century 
as belonging to the unscientific or the archaic period. It has been frequently said 


Memoir of George Brown Goode. 57 


by naturalists that there was no science in America until after the beginning of the 
present century. This is, in one sense, true, in another, very false. There were 
then, it is certain, many men equal in capacity, in culture, in enthusiasm, to the 
naturalists of to-day, who were giving careful attention to the study of precisely the 
same phenomena of nature. The misfortune of the men of science of 1785 was that 
they had three generations fewer of scientific predecessors than have we. 


This address he followed up by a second, entitled The Beginnings of 
American Science. ‘The Third Century, delivered in 1887, also before the 
Biological Society. He divided the period from 1782 to 1888 into three 
periods, which he called after the names of Jefferson, Silliman, and 
Agassiz. 

Continuing along this same line, he contributed to the American His- 
torical Association, in *890, a paper on The Origin of the National Scien- 
tific and Educational Institutions of the United States. 

The material contained in these various papers was summed up in an 
unpublished work entitled What has been done for Science in America, 
1492-1892, which illustrates in an interesting way the development of 
Doctor Goode’s mind, for in this study as much attention is given to 
astronomy, physics, and even comparative philology as is paid to natural 
history. Parallel with this work may be mentioned a collection of por- 
traits of almost every scientific man of importance mentioned in any of 
these four essays. Besides these, he wrote an article in the Science 
News, 1878, entitled The earliest American Naturalist, Thomas 
Harriott. 

He was greatly interested in American history, a close student of the 
writings of the fathers—more especially of Washington and Jefferson— 
and an enthusiastic investigator of Virginia history, for which he had 
assembled a great mass of original material. He was especially interested 
in the study of institutional history, which he thought approximated 
most nearly to the scientific method. It is more than likely that this 
interest grew out of his studies in genealogy, the most splendid result of 
which is his Virginia Cousins, though a great mass of material, still 
unpublished, attests the fact that these genealogical collections were 
intended to cover the South and to serve as a contribution to Southern 
history. He relates in the prologue to his Virginia Cousins that his 
interest in the Goode family tree was awakened in him by his father at 
the age of twelve. 

The significance of genealogical studies for American history he recog- 
nizes in the following words: ‘‘ The time is coming when the sociologist 
and the historian will make an extensive use of the facts so laboriously 
gathered and systematically classified by genealogists, and it is probable 
that this can be better done in the United States than elsewhere;’’ and 
again, ‘‘One of the elements of satisfaction in genealogical study legiti- 
mately arises from the success of our attempts to establish personal rela- 
- tions with past ages and to be able to people our minds with the images 
of our forefathers as they lived two, three, four hundred years ago.’’ 


58 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


But there was a scientific interest which attached to this work, as well 
as an historical one, for Doctor Goode was a strong believer in heredity, 
and he was profoundly impressed with the idea that man’s capabilities 
and tendencies were to be explained by the characteristics of the men 
and women whose blood flowed through their veins. . 

This idea, too, is brought out strongly in his biographical work, 
nowhere more strongly than in his biographies of Henry, Baird, and 
Langley (almost the last work he ever did) for the Smithsonian Memo- 
rial Volume, and it is carefully worked out in an elaborate plan of a 
biography of Professor Baird, which would probably have been the next 
literary work he would have undertaken had his life been spared. 

He was greatly interested in bibliography, his methods in this work 
being most exact. He published bibliographies of Spencer Fullerton 
Baird, Charles Girard, Philip Lutley Sclater, and had under way bibli- 
ographies of Theodore Gill and David Starr Jordan. 

A gigantic work in the same line [says Dr. Gill] had been projected by him and 
most of the materials collected; it was no less than a complete bibliography of 
Ichthyology, including the names of all genera and species published as new. In 
no way may Ichthyology, at least, more feel the loss of Goode than in the loss of 
the complete bibliography. 

Mr. Goode was a student of the history of the scientific societies, and 
was himself deeply interested in their welfare. In all the Washington 
scientific societies he was an active member, serving as president both of 
the Biological Society and the Philosophical Society, before which he 
delivered notable addresses on the history of American science. He 
also belonged to the Anthropological and Geographic societies of Wash- 
ington and stoutly maintained the traditions of all these. He was elected 
a member of the National Academy of Sciences in 1888, was for many 
years a member of the Association for the Advancement of Science, being 
elected vice-president of the zoological section last summer, a few days 
before his death. He was a member of the American Philosophical 
Society, of the American Society of Naturalists, and a Fellow of the 
American Academy of Arts and Sciences, and among foreign societies he 
had been honored by election to the Société des Amis des Sciences Nat- 
urelles de Moscou, Société Zoodlogique de France, Zoological Society of 
London, and the Société Scientifique du Chile. 

-He seemed to regard historical and patriotic societies with an equal 
interest, being a member of the council of the American Historical 
Association and a member of the Virginia Historical Society, and the 
Columbian Historical Society of Washington, and of the newly formed 
Southern Historical Society. His work in connection with the hereditary 
and patriotic societies was so especially near to him as to demand an 
unusual mention. He was one of the organizers of the Sons of the 
American Revolution of the District of Columbia, holding the offices of 
vice-president-general and registrar-general in the national society, and at 


Memoir of George Brown Goode. 59 


the time of his death of president in the local society. He stimulated 
this society to issue historical publications, and saw a number through the 
press himself. A society known as the Sons of the Revolution having 
been founded with somewhat similar aims, Mr. Goode joined this organi- 
zation with the avowed purpose of bringing them together. In this society 
he held the office of vice-president. He was lieutenant-governor of the 
Society of Colonial Wars of the District of Columbia. He gave constant 
advice to the Daughters of the American Revolution during the period 
of their organization, and was instrumental in having the State of Massa- 
chusetts present, as a home for the Daughters of the American Revolu- 
tion in Georgia, its building at the Atlanta Exposition, which was a copy 
of the old Craigie house in Cambridge, once occupied by Washington 
as his headquarters, and later the residence of Longfellow. The success 
of this effort gave him special pleasure, for he regarded it as one of the 
means for promoting friendliness between the people of New England 
and the people of the South. 

Although these numerous duties and activities would seem to have been 
more than enough for any single man, Mr. Goode did not stop here. 
Every scientific activity of the Government had at some time or other 
the advantage of his wise counsel and his active cooperation. His public 
duties outside of the Smithsonian in connection with the Department of 
State, the Fish Commission, the census, and the various expositions 
abroad at which he represented his Government I have already alluded 
to; but he was possessed of a higher order of patriotism which even 
this service did not satisfy. Mr. William I. Wilson, Regent of the 
Smithsonian Institution, lately Postmaster-General of the United States, 
and president of Washington and Lee University, says: 


He was a richly endowed man, first, with that capacity and that resistless bent 
toward the work in which he attained his great distinction that made it a perennial 
delight to him; but he was scarcely less richly endowed in his more unpretending 
and large human sympathies, and it was this latter that distinguished him as a 
citizen and a historian. 

As a citizen he was full of patriotic American enthusiasm. He understood, as all 
must understand who look with seriousness upon the great problems that confront a 
free people and who measure the difficulties of those problems—he understood that 
at least one preparation for the discharge of the duties of American citizenship was 
the general education of the people, and so he advocated as far as possible bringing 
within the reach of all the people not only the opportunities but the attractions 
and the incitements to intellectual living. 

Doctor Goode, with the quick and warm sympathies of the man and of the histo- 
rian, seems to have felt that he could do no greater service to the people of his day 
and generation and to his country than in the most attractive and concrete way, if I 
may so express it, to lead the young men of this country to the study of the history 
of the past, to the deeds and the writings of the great men to whom we owe the 
foundation and the perpetuation of our institutions. 


He was greatly interested in the establishment of a national university, 
and in 1891 read a paper in Philadelphia, afterwards printed in the 


60 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


magazine Lend a Hand, edited by Edward Everett Hale, entitled Wash- 
ington’s University the Nation’s Debt of Honor. In this article he 
computed that the bequest of Washington to the United States for a 
national university would, at compound interest, amount, in 1892, to 
$4,100,000, and he proposed that the National Government should 
restore this sum as the nucleus of the endowment for the National 
University. He acted as secretary of the executive committee, of which 
the Chief Justice was chairman, which was laboring to this end, and 
spared no effort to bring it to a successful conclusion. 

Another project in which he was interested and for which he labored 
was a movement to fully open French universities to American students. 
His interest was excited in this movement because he thought that 
American science was becoming one-sided, owing to the fact that all of 
the students who went abroad visited German universities. Of the 
American committee, which, in cooperation with the French committee, 
had this matter in charge, Doctor Goode was the secretary, and he had 
the satisfaction of seeing this project brought to a successful issue before 
his death. 

He had a strong interest in literature, and wrote in an excellent Eng- 
lish style—clear, direct, and unpretentious. I have never met a mind in 
touch with more far-away and disconnected points than his, nor one of 
the same breadth and variety of writing, outside of the range of his own 
specialty. He had fine zesthetic tastes and derived keen enjoyment from 
everything that was beautiful in nature or in art. He knew all natural 
sights and sounds, and recognized the note of every bird. He knew 
good pictures and good prints, was familiar with all the processes of 
graphic arts, and a good judge of them, both on the technical and the 
artistic side. He loved a beautifully printed book and an artistic bind- 
ing. All these tastes he utilized in the publications which he wrote or 
edited. The work which he had in hand at the time of his death and to 
which he devoted so much loving care, the History of the First Half 
Century of the Smithsonian Institution, he aimed to make the expression 
of all these tastes. ‘To no writing which he ever did, did he bring a 
higher literary expression than to the pages which he prepared for this 
book. He was at infinite trouble in discussing such matters as the form 
of the page, the style of the type, the quality of the paper, the initial 
letters, the headlines and illustrations, and the binding, and when he 
discussed any of these points with the expert craftsmen his knowledge 
of the details was as full as their own. 

In spite of ill health and suffering, his overwrought nervous system, 
and his occasional severe mental depression, he never allowed himself to 
take a cynical view of human nature. He was a man who loved his 
fellow-men, and to whom that love was repaid with a warmth to a degree 
rare in this day. He made all other men’s concerns his own. He sent 
notes and suggestions to hundreds of scientific men, whose work profited 


Memoir of George Brown Goode. 61 


thereby, and in the large circle of friends he had, scarcely one did not at 
one time or other come to Mr. Goode for advice and sympathy upon his 
own private affairs. He was an intensely loyal American patriot, ever 
careful that nothing should be said or done that should in anyway reflect 
’ upon his country. He was especially devoted to Virginia and never hap- 
pier than when he could spend a few days on her soil, looking over a 
historic house or copying some of the records which he hoped to turn to 
advantage in his historical studies. 

‘‘ He is remembered,’’ says Doctor Dall, ‘‘as one never weary of well- 
doing; who reached the heights, though ever aiming higher; whose 
example stimulated and whose history will prove a lasting inspiration.’’ 

‘As a public-spirited naturalist,’’ says Professor Osborn, ‘‘he leaves us 
the tender memory and the noble example, which helps us and will help 
many coming men into the higher conception of duty in the service and 
promotion of the truth. Wecan not forget his smile nor his arm passing 
through the arm of his friend.’’ 

I have never known a more perfectly sincere and loyal character than 
Doctor Goode’s, or a man who, with better judgment of other men or 
greater ability in molding their purposes to his own, used these powers 
to such uniformly disinterested ends, so that he could maintain the dis- 
cipline of a great establishment like the National Museum while still 
retaining the personal affection of every subordinate. 

I have scarcely alluded to his family life, for of his home we are not 
to speak here, further than to say that he was eminently a domestic 
man, finding the highest joys that life brought him with his family and 
children. 

He has gone; and on the road where we are all going there has not 
preceded us a man who lived more for others, a truer man, a more loyal 
friend. 


MUSEUM-HISTORY AND MUSEUMS OF HISTORY. 


BY 


GEORGE BROWN GOODE, 


Assistant Secretary, Smithsonian Institution, in charge 
of the U. S. National Museum. 


63 


MUSEUM-HISTORY AND MUSEUMS OF HISTORY: 


By GEORGE BROWN GOODE, 


Assistant Secretary, Smithsonian Institution, in charge of the U.S. National 
Museum, 


The true significance of the word museum may perhaps best be 
brought to our apprehension by an allusion to the ages which preceded 
its origin—when our ancestors, hundreds of generations removed, were 
in the midst of those great migrations which peopled Europe with races 
originally seated farther to the east. 

It has been well said that the story of early Greece is the first chapter 
in the history of the political and intellectual life of Europe. 

To the history of Greece let us go for the origin of the museum idea, 
which in its present form seems to have found its only congenial home 
among the European offshoots of the Indo-Germanic division of the 
world’s inhabitants. 

Museums, in the language of ancient Greece, were the homes of the 
muses. The first were in the groves of Parnassus and Helicon, and later 
they were temples in various parts of Hellas. Soon, however, the mean- 
ing of the word changed, and it was used to describe a place of study, or 
aschool. Athenzeus described Athens in the second century as ‘‘the 
museum of Greece,’’ and the name of museum was definitely applied to 
that portion of the palace of Alexandria which was set apart for the study 
of the sciences, and which contained the famous Alexandrian library. 
The museum of Alexandria was a great university, the abiding place of 
men of science and letters, who were divided into many companies or 
colleges, and for whose support a handsome revenue was allotted. 

The Alexandrian museum was destroyed in the days of Ceesar and 
Aurelian, and the term museum, as applied to a great public institution, 
dropped out of use from the fourth to the seventeenth century. The 
disappearance of a word is an indication that the idea for which it stood 
has also fallen into disfavor; and such, indeed, was the fact. The his- 
tory of museum and library run in parallel lines. It is not until the 
development of the arts and sciences has taken place, until an extensive 


‘A paper read before the American Historical Association, in Washington City, 
December 26-28, 1888. 


NAT MUS 97, PT 2 


5 65 


66 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


written literature has grown up, and a distinct literary and scientific 
class has been developed, that it is possible for the modern library and 
museum to come into existence. The museum of the present is more dis- 
similar to its old-time representative than is our library to its prototype. 

There were in the remote past galleries of pictures and sculpture, as 
well as so-called museums. Public collections of paintings and statuary 
were founded in Greece and Rome at a very early day. There was a 
gallery of paintings (Pinacotheca) in one of the marble halls of the pro- 
pyleum at Athens, and in Rome there were lavish public displays of 
works of art. M. Dezobry, in his Rome in the Time of Augustus, has 
described this phase of Latin civilization in the first century before 
Christ: 

For many years [remarks one of his characters] the taste for paintings has been 
extending in a most extraordinary manner. In former times they were only to be 
found in the temples, where they were placed less for purposes of ornament than 
as an act of homage to the gods; now they are everywhere, not only in temples, in 
private houses, and in public halls, but also on outside walls, exposed freely to air 
and sunlight. Rome is one great picture gallery; the Forum of Augustus is gor- 
geous with paintings, and they may be seen also in the Forum of Cesar, in the 
Roman Forum, under the peristyles of many of the temples, and especially in the 
porticos used for public promenades, some of which are literally filled with them. 
Thus everybody is enabled to enjoy them, and to enjoy them at all hours of the 
day. 

The public men of Rome, at a later period in its history, were no less 
mindful of the claims of art. ‘They believed that the metropolis of a great 
nation should be adorned with all the best products of civilization. We 
are told by Pliny that when Ceesar was dictator, he purchased, for 300,000 
deniers, two Greek paintings, which he caused to be publicly displayed, 
and that Agrippa placed many costly works of art in a hall which he built 
and bequeathed to the Roman people. Constantine gathered together in 
Constantinople the paintings and sculptures of the great masters, so that 
the city, before its destruction, became a great museum, like Rome. 

The taste for works of art was generally prevalent throughout the 
whole Mediterranean region in the days of the ancient civilizations, and 
there is abundant reason to believe that there were prototypes of the 
modern museum in Persia, Assyria, Babylonia, and Egypt, as well as in 
Rome. Collections in natural history also undoubtedly existed, though 
we have no positive descriptions of them. Natural curiosities, of course, 
found their way into the private collections of monarchs, and were doubt- 
less also in use for study among the savants in the Alexandrian museum. 
Aristotle, in the fourth century before Christ, had, it is said, an enormous 
grant of money for use in his scientific researches, and Alexander the 
Great, his patron, ‘‘took care to send to him a great variety of zoological 
specimens, collected in the countries which he had subdued,’’ and also 
‘‘placed at his disposal several thousand persons, who were occupied 
in hunting, fishing, and making the observations which were necessary 
for completing his History of Animals.’’ If human nature has not 


PLATE 1. 


Part Il. 


Report of U. S, National Museum, 1897. 


Yo 1sebiicgamiaes, 


CF RENT Ce hee? 


VALLI 


va 


Museum-Ffistory and Museums of Ffistory. 67 


changed more than we suppose, Aristotle must have had a great museum 
of natural history. 

When the Roman capital was removed to Byzantium, the arts and 
letters of Europe began to decline. The Church was unpropitious, and 
the invasions of the northern barbarians destroyed everything. In 476, 
with the close of the Western Empire, began a period of intellectual 
torpidity which was to last for a thousand years. 

It was in Bagdad and Cordova that science and letters were next to be 
revived, and Africa was to surpass Europe in the extent of its libraries. 
In the Periplus, or Voyage of Hanno, occurs the following passage 
in regard to specimens of Gorillas, or ‘‘ Gorgones:”’ 

Pursuing them, we were not able to take the men (males); they all escaped, being 
able to climb the precipices, and defended themselves with pieces of rock. But three 
women (females), who bit and scratched those who led them, were not willing to 


follow. However, having killed them, we flayed them, and conveyed the skins to 
Carthage; for we did not sail any further, as provisions began to fail.! 


With the Renaissance came a period of new life for collectors. The 
churches of southern Europe became art galleries, and monarchs and 
noblemen and ecclesiastical dignitaries collected books, manuscripts, 
sculptures, pottery, and gems, forming the beginning of collections 
which have since grown into public museums. Some of these collec- 
tions doubtless had their first beginnings in the midst of the dark ages, 
within the walls of feudal castles, or the larger monasteries, but their 
number was small, and they must have consisted chiefly of those objects 
so nearly,akin to literature as especially to command the attention of 
bookish men. 

As soon as it became the fashion for the powerful and the wealthy to 
possess collections, the scope of their collections began to extend, and 
objects were gathered on account of their rarity or grotesqueness, as well 
as for their beauty or instructiveness. Flourens, in his Life and Works 
of Blumenbach, remarks: ‘‘The old Germany, with its old chateaux, 
seemed to pay no homage to science; still the lords of these ancient and 
noble mansions had long since made it a business, and almost a point of 
honor, to form with care what were called cabinets of curiosities.’’ 

To the apothecary of old, with his shop crowded with the curious 
substances used in the medical practice of his day, the museum owes 
some of its elements, just as the modern botanic garden owes its earliest 
history to the ‘‘physic garden,’’ which in its time was an outgrowth 
of the apothecary’s garden of simples. The apothecary in Romeo and 
Juliet — 

In whose needy shop a tortoise hung, 


An alligator stuff’d, and other skins 
Of eel-shaped fishes, — 


was the precursor of the modern museum keeper. In the hostelries and 
taverns, the gathering places of the people in the sixteenth and seven- 


r —~—___--_— —— ee 


‘Owen, Transactions, Zoological Society of London, V, p. 266, footnote. 


68 Memortai of George Brown Goode. 


teenth centuries, there grew up little museums of curiosities from foreign 
lands, while in the great fairs were always exhibited sundry gatherings 
of strange and entertaining objects. 

At the middle of the last century there appear to have been several 
such collections of curiosities in Britain. 

In Artedi’s ichthyological works there are numerous references to 
places where he had seen American fishes, especially at Spring Garden 
(later known as the Vauxhall Garden, a famous place of resort), and at 
the Nag’s Head, and the White Bear, and the Green Dragon in 
Stepney, in those days a famous hostelry in London. He speaks also of 
collections at the houses of Mr. Lillia and in that of Master Saltero (the 
barber-virtuoso, described by Bulwer in his Devereux), in Chelsea 
and at Stratford, and also in the collection of Seba, in Amsterdam, and 
in that of Hans Sloane. 

With the exception of ‘‘the monk or Angel-fish, Anglis, alias Mermaid- 
fish,” probably a species of Sgwatina, which he saw at the Nag’s Head, 
all the fishes in these London collections belonged to the order Plectog- 
nathi. 

Josselyn, in his Two Voyages to New England (1638-1673), after 
telling us how a Piscataway colonist had the fortune to killa Pilhannaw — 
the king of the birds of prey—continues, ‘‘ How he disposed of her I 
know not, but had he taken her alive and sent her over into England, 
neither Bartholomew or Sturbridge Fair could have produced such 
another sight.”’ 

Shakespeare’s mirror strongly reflects the spirit of the day. When 
Trinculo, cast ashore upon a lonesome island, catches a glimpse of Caliban, 
he exclaims : 

What have we here? A manora fish? Dead or alive? A fish: he smells like a 
fish; avery ancient and fish-like smell. . . . astrange fish! Were I in England 
now, (as once I was), and had but this fish painted, not a holiday fool there but would 
give a piece of silver; there would this monster make a man; any strange beast there 


makes a man: when they will not give a doit to relieve a lame beggar, they will lay 
out ten to see a dead Indian. 


The idea of a great national museum of science and art was first worked 
out by Lord Bacon in his New Atlantis, a philosophical romance pub- 
lished at the close of the seventeenth century. ‘The first scientific 
museum actually founded was that begun at Oxford in 1667, by Elias 
Ashmole,, still known as the Ashmolean Museum, composed chiefly of 
natural history specimens collected by the botanists Tradescant, father 
and son, in Virginia, and in the north of Africa. Soon after, in 1753, 
the British Museum was established by act of Parliament, inspired by 
the will of Sir Hans Sloane, who, dying in 1749, left to the nation his 
invaluable collection of books, manuscripts, and curiosities.’ 


*The collections of Sloane, who was one of the early scientific explorers of 
America, were like those of the Tradescants, contained many New World speci- 


Report of U. S, National Museum, 1897. Part Il. PLATE 2. 


Louis AGASSIZ. 


Museum-History and Museums of Ffistory. 69 


Many of the great national museums of Europe had their origin in the 
private collections of monarchs. France claims the honor of having been 
the first to change a royal into a national museum, when, in 1789, the 
Louvre came into the possession of a republican government. It is very 
clear, however, that democratic England, by its action in 1753, stands 
several decades in advance—its act, moreover, being one of deliberate 
founding rather than a species of conquest. 

The first chapter in the history of American museums is short. In 
colonial days there were none. In the early years of the Republic, the 
establishment of such institutions by city, State, or Federal Government 
would not have been considered a legitimate act. When the General 
Government came into the possession of extensive collections as the result 
of the Wilkes Exploring Expedition in 1842, they were placed in charge 
of a private organization, the National Institution, and later, together 


mens, and the British Museum as well as the Ashmolean was built around a nucleus 
of American material. Indeed, we can not doubt that interest in American explora- 
tion had largely to do with the development of natural history museums. 

In those days all Europe was anxious to hear of the wonders of the new-found con- 
tinent, and to see the strange objects which explorers might be able to bring back 
with them, and monarchs sought eagerly to secure novelties in the shape of animals 
and plants. 

Columbus was charged by Queen Isabella to collect birds, and it is recorded that 
he took back to Spain the skins of several kinds of animals. Even to this day may 
be seen in the old collegiate church in Siena a votive offering placed there nearly 
four centuries ago by the discoverer of America. It consists of the armor worn by 
him when he first stepped upon the soil of the New World and the rostrum of a 
swordfish killed on the American coast. 

The state papers of Great Britain contain many entries of interest in this connec- 
tion. King James I was an enthusiastic collector. December 15, 1609, Lord South- 
ampton wrote to Lord Salisbury that he had told the King about Virginia squirrels 
brought into England which were said to fly. The King very earnestly asked 
if none were provided for him—whether Salisbury had none for him—and said he 
was sure Salisbury would get him one. The writer apologizes for troubling Lord 
Salisbury, ‘‘but,’’ continued he, ‘‘you know so well how he [the King] is affected 
to such toys.”’ 

Charles I appears to have been equally curious in such matters. In 1637 he sent 
John Tradescant the younger to Virginia ‘‘to gather all rarities of flowers, plants, 
and shells.” 

In 1625 we find Tradescant writing to one Nicholas that it is the Duke of Buck- 
ingham’s pleasure that he should deal with all merchants from all places, but espe- 
cially from Virginia, Bermuda, Newfoundland, Guinea, the Amazons, and the East 
Indies, for all manner of rare beasts, fowls and birds, shells and shining stones, etc. 

In the Domestic Correspondence of Charles I, in another place, July, 1625, is a 
‘‘Note of things desired from Guinea, for which letters are to be written to the mer- 
chants of the Guinea Company.’’ Among other items referred to are ‘‘an elephant’s 
head, with the teeth very large; a river horse’s head; strange sorts of fowls; birds’ 
and fishes’ skins; great flying and sucking fishes; all sorts of serpents; dried fruits, 
shining stones, etc.’’ Still farther on is a note of one Jeremy Blackman’s charge— 
in all, £20—for transporting four deer from Virginia, including corn and a place 
made of wood for them to lie in. 


70 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


with other similar materials, in that of a corporation, the Smithsonian 
Institution, which was for a long period of years obliged to pay largely 
for their care out of its income from a private endowment. It was not 
until 1876, however, that the existence of a National Museum, as such, 
was definitely recognized in the proceedings of Congress, and its financial 
support fully provided for. 

In early days, however, our principal cities had each a public museum, 
founded and supported by private enterprise. The earliest general col- 
lection was that formed at Norwalk, Connecticut, prior to the Revolution, 
by a man named Arnold, described as ‘‘a curious collection of American 
birds and insects.’’ ‘This it was which first awakened the interest of 
President Adams in the natural sciences. He visited it several times as 
he traveled from Boston to Philadelphia, and his interest culminated in 
the foundation of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.' In 1790 
Doctor Hosack brought to America from Europe the first cabinet of min- 
erals ever seen on this continent. 

The earliest public establishment, however, was the Philadelphia 
Museum, established by Charles Willson Peale in 1785, which had for a 
nucleus a stuffed paddlefish and the bones of a mammoth, and which 
was for a time housed in the building of the American Philosophical 
Society. In 1800 it was full of popular attractions. 


There were a mammoth’s tooth from the Ohio, and a woman’s shoe from Canton; 
nests of the kind used to make soup of, and a Chinese fan six feet long; bits of asbestus, 
belts of wampum, stuffed birds and feathers from the Friendly Islands, scalps, toma- 
hawks, and long lines of portraits of great men of the Revolutionary war. To visit 
the museum, to wander through the rooms, play upon the organ, examine the rude 
electrical machine, and have a profile drawn by the physiognomitian, were pleasures 
from which no stranger to the city ever refrained. 


Doctor Hare’s oxyhydrogen blowpipe was shown in this museum by 
Mr. Rubens Peale as early as 1810. 

The Baltimore Museum was managed by Rembrandt Peale, and was in 
existence as early as 1815 and as late as 1830. 

Earlier efforts were made, however, in Philadelphia. Doctor Chovet, 
of that city, had a collection of wax anatomical models made by him in 
Europe, and Professor John Morgan, of the University of Pennsylvania, 
who learned his methods from the Hunters in London and Sué in Paris, 
was also forming such a collection before the Revolution. 


'This collection [we are told] was sold to Sir Ashton Lever, in whose apart- 
ments in London Mr. Adams saw it again, and felt a new regret at our imperfect 
knowledge of the productions of the three kingdoms of nature in our land. In 
France his visits to the museums and other establishments, with the inquiries of 
Academicians and other men of science and letters respecting this country, and their 
encomiums on the Philosophical Society of Philadelphia, suggested to him the idea 
of engaging his native State to do something in the same good but neglected cause.— 
Kirtland, Mem. American Academy of Sciences, Boston, I, xxii. 


Report of U. S. National Museum, 1897. Part Il. PLATE 3. 


JOHN JAMES AUDUBON. 


Museum-fflistory and Museums of Fistory. Fist 


The Columbian Museum and Turrell’s Museum, in Boston, are spoken 
of in the annals of the day, and there was a small collection in the attic 
of the statehouse in Hartford. 

The Western Museum, in Cincinnati, was founded about 1815 by 
Robert Best, M. D., afterwards of Lexington, Kentucky, who seems to 
have been a capable collector, and who contributed matter to Godman’s 
American Natural History. In 1818 a society styled the Western 
Museum Society was organized among the citizens, which, though 
scarcely a scientific organization, seems to have taken a somewhat liberal 
and public-spirited view of what a museum should be. With the estab- 
lishment of the Academy of Natural Sciences in Philadelphia in 1812, 
and the New York Lyceum of Natural History, the history of American 
scientific museums had its true beginning. 

The intellectual life of America is so closely allied to that of England 
that the revival of interest in museums and in popular education at the 
middle of the present century is especially significant tous. The great 
exhibition of 1851 was one of the most striking features of the industrial 
revolution in England, that great transformation which, following closely 
upon the introduction of railroads, turned England feudal and agricul- 
tural into England democratic and commercial. 

The great exhibition marked an epoch in the intellectual progress of 
English-speaking people. ‘‘The great exhibition,’’ writes a popular 
novelist, and a social philosopher as well, ‘‘did one great service for 
country people. It taught them how easy it is to get to London, and 
what a mine of wealth, especially for after memory and purposes of con- 
versation, exists in that great place.’’ 

Under the wise administration of the South Kensington staff, a great 
system of educational museums has been developed all through the 
United Kingdom. 

Our own Centennial Exhibition in 1876 was almost as great a revela- 
tion to the people of the United States. The thoughts of the country 
were opened to many things before undreamed of. One thing we may 
regret—that we have no such widespread system of museums as that 
which has developed in the motherland with South Kensington as its 
administrative center. England has had nearly forty years, however, and 
we but thirteen, since our exhibition. May we not hope that within a 
like period of time, and before the year 1914, the United States may have 
attained the position which England now occupies, at least in the respects 
of popular interest and substantial governmental support? ‘There are 
now over one hundred and fifty public museums in the United Kingdom, 
all active and useful. 

The museum systems of Great Britain are, it seems to me, much closer 
to the ideal which America should follow, than are those of either France 
or Germany. ‘They are designed more thoughtfully to meet the needs of 


72 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


the people, and are more intimately intertwined with the policy of national 
popular education. 

Sir Henry Cole, the working founder of the Department of Science and 
Art, speaking of the purpose of the museums under his care, said to the 
people of Birmingham in 1874: 

If you wish your schools of science and art to be effective, your health, the air, 
and your food to be wholesome, your life to be long, your manufactures to improve, 
your trade to increase, and your people to be civilized, you must have museums of 
science and art to illustrate the principles of life, health, nature, science, art, and 
beauty. 

Again, in words as applicable to Americans of to-day as to Britons in 
1874, said he: 

A thorough education and a knowledge of science and art are vital to the nation, 
and to the place it holds at present in the civilized world. Science and art are the 
lifeblood of successful production. All civilized nations are running a race with us, 
and our national decline will date from the period when we go to sleep over the 
work of education, science, and art. What has been done is at the mere threshold 
of the work yet to be done. 

The people’s museum should be much more than a house full of speci- 
mens in glass cases. It should be a house full of ideas, arranged with 
the strictest attention to system. I once tried to express this thought 
by saying: ‘‘An efficient educational museum may be described as a col- 
lection of instructive labels, each illustrated by a well-selected specimen.’’ 

The museum, let me add, should be more than a collection of speci- 
mens, well arranged and well labeled. Like the library, it should be 
under the constant supervision of one or more men, well informed, schol- 
arly, and withal practical, and fitted by tastes and training to aid in the 
educational work. I should not organize the museums primarily for the 
use of people in their larval or school-going stage of existence. The 
public school-teacher, with the illustrated text-books, diagrams, and other 
appliances, has in these days a professional outfit which is usually quite 
sufficient to enable him to teach his pupils. 

School days last at the most only from four to fifteen years, and they 
end, with the majority of mankind, before their minds have reached the 
stage of growth most favorable for the reception and assimilation of the 
best and most useful thought. Why should we be crammed in the time 
of infancy and kept in a state of mental starvation during the period 
which follows, from maturity to old age—a state which is disheartening 
and unnatural all the more because of the intellectual tastes which have 
been stimulated and partially formed by school life? 

The museum idea is much broader than it was fifty or even twenty- 
five years ago. The museum of to-day is no longer a chance assemblage 
of curiosities, but rather a series of objects selected with reference to 
their value to investigators, or their possibilities for public enlightenment. 
The museum of the future may be made one of the chief agencies of the 
higher civilization. 


Museum-fiistory and Museums of Ffistory. 73 


I hope that the time will come when every town shall have both its 
public museum and its public library, each with a staff of competent men, 
mutually helpful, and contributing largely to the intellectual life of the 
community. 

The museum of the future in this democratic land should be adapted 
to the needs of the mechanic, the factory operator, the day laborer, the 
salesman, and the clerk, as much as to those of the professional man and 
the man of leisure. It is proper that there be laboratories and profes- 
sional libraries for the development of the experts who are to organize, 
arrange, and explain the museums. 

It is proper that laboratories be utilized to the fullest extent for the 
credit of the institution to which they belong. No museum can do good 
and be respected which does not each year give additional proofs of its 
claims to be considered a center of learning. On the other hand, the 
public have a right to ask that much shall be done directly in their 
interest. They will gladly allow the museum officer to use part of his 
time in study and experiment. They will take pride in the possession 
by the museum of tens of thousands of specimens, interesting only to 
the specialist, hidden away perpetually from public view, but necessary 
for proper scientific research. ‘They are the foundations of the intellect- 
ual superstructure which gives to the institution its proper standing. 

Still, no pains must be spared in the presentation of the material in 
the exhibition halls. The specimens must be prepared in the most care- 
ful and artistic manner, and arranged attractively in well-designed cases 
and behind the clearest of glass. Each object must bear a label giving 
its name and history so fully that all the probable questions of the visitor 
are answered in advance. Books of reference must be kept in convenient 
places. Colors of walls, cases, and labels must be restful and quiet, and 
comfortable seats must be everywhere accessible, for the task of the 
museum visitor is a weary one at best. 

All intellectual work may be divided into two classes, the one tending 
toward the increase of knowledge, the other toward its diffusion ; the one 
toward investigation and discovery, the other toward the education of the 
people and the application of known facts to promoting their material 
welfare. The efforts of learned men and of institutions of learning are 
sometimes applied solely to one of these departments of effort—sometimes 
to both—and it is generally admitted, by the most advanced teachers, 
that, for their students as well as for themselves, the happiest results are 
reached by carrying on investigation and instruction simultaneously. 
Still more is this true of institutions of learning. The college which 
imparts only second-hand knowledge to its students belongs to a period 
in the history of education which is fast being left behind. 

The museum must, in order to perform its proper functions, contribute 
_ to the advancement of learning through the increase as well as through 
the diffusion of knowledge. 


74 Memorial of George Brown Goode. | 


We speak of ‘‘educational’’ museums and of the ‘‘educational’’ 
method of installation so frequently that there may be danger of incon- 
sistency in the use of the term. An educational museum, as it is usually 
spoken of, is one in which an attempt is made to teach the unprofessional 
visitor of an institution for popular education by means of labeled col- 
lections, and it may be, also, by popular lectures. A college museum, 
although used as an aid to advanced instruction, is not an ‘‘ educational 
museum’’ in the ordinary sense, nor does a museum of research, like the 
Museum of Comparative Zoology at Cambridge, Massachusetts, belong to 
this class, although, to a limited extent, it attempts and performs popular 
educational work in addition to its other functions. 

In the National Museum in Washington the collections are divided 
into two great classes: The exhibition series, which constitutes the educa- 
tional portion of the Museum, and is exposed to public view, with all 
possible accessories for public entertainment and instruction; and the 
study series, which is kept in the scientific laboratories, and is rarely 
examined except by professional investigators. 

In every properly conducted museum the collections must, from the 
very beginning, divide themselves into these two classes, and, in planning. 
for its administration, provision should be made not only for the exhibi- 
tion of objects in glass cases, but for the preservation of large collections 
not available for exhibition, to be used for the studies of a very limited 
number of specialists. Lord Bacon, who, as we have noticed, was the 
first to whom occurred the idea of a great museum of science and art, 
complains thus, centuries ago, in his book, On the Advancement of 
Learning, that up to that time the means for intellectual progress had 
been used exclusively for ‘‘amusement’’ and ‘‘teaching,’’ and not for 
the ‘‘augmentation of science.’’ 

The boundary line between the library and the museum is neither 
straight nor plain. The former, if its scope be rightly indicated by its 
name, is, primarily, a place for books. The latter is a depository for 
objects of every kind, books not excepted. The British Museum, with 
its libraries, its pictures, its archzeological galleries, its anthropological, 
geological, botanical, and zoological collections, is an example of the 
most comprehensive interpretation of the term. Professor Huxley has 
described the museum as ‘‘a consultative library of objects.’’ This defi- 
nition is suggestive but unsatisfactory. It relates only to the contents of 
the museum as distinguished from those of the library, and makes no 
reference to the differences in the methods of their administration. 

T’he treasures of the library must be examined one at a time, and by 
one person at atime. ‘Their use requires long-continued attention, and 
their removal from their proper places in the system of arrangement. 
Those of the museums are displayed to public view in groups, in sys- 
tematic sequence, so that they have a collective as well as an individual 
significance. Furthermore, much of their meaning may be read at a 


Report of U. S, National Museum, 1897. Part II. PLATE 4. 


DON FELIX D’AZARA. 


Museum-Flistory and Museums of Ifistory. 75 


glance. ‘The museum cultivates the powers of observation, and the casual 
visitor even makes discoveries for himself, and, under the guidance of 
the labels, forms his own impressions. In the library one studies the 
impressions of others. 

The library is most useful to the educated; the museum to educated 
and uneducated alike, to the masses as well as to the few, and is a powerful 
stimulant to intellectual activity in either class. 

‘The influence of the museum upon a community is not so deep as that of 
the library, but extends toa much larger number of people. The National 
Museum in Washington has 300,000 visitors a year, each of whom carries 
away a certain number of new thoughts. 

The two ideas may be carried out, side by side, in the same building, 
and, if need be, under the same management, not only without antag- 
onism, but with advantage. That the proximity of a good library is 
absolutely essential to the influence of a museum, will be admitted by 
everyone. I am confident, also, that a museum wisely organized and 
properly arranged is certain to benefit the library near which it stands in 
many ways, and more positively than through its power to stimulate 
interest in books, and thus to increase the general popularity of the library 
and to enlarge its endowment. 

Many books and valuable ones would be required in this best kind of 
museum work, but it is not intended to enter into competition with the 
library. When necessary, volumes might be duplicated. It is very often 
the case, however, that books are more useful and safer in the museum 
than on the library shelves, for in the museum they may be seen daily by 
thousands, while in the library their very existence is forgotten by all 
except their custodian. 

Audubon’s Birds of North America is a book which everyone has 
heard of and which every one wants to see at least once in his lifetime. In 
a library, it probably is not examined by ten persons in a year. Ina 
museum, if the volume were exposed to view in a glass case, a few of the 
most striking plates detached, framed, and hung upon the wall near at 
hand, it will teach a lesson to every passer-by. 

The library may be called upon for aid by the museum in many direc- 
tions. Pictures are often better than specimens to illustrate certain ideas. 
The races of man and their distribution can only be shown by pictures 
and maps. Atlases of ethnological portraits and maps are out of place in 
a library if there is a museum nearby in which they can be displayed. 
They are not even members of the class described by Lamb as ‘‘ books 
which are not books.’’ They are not books, but museum specimens, 
masquerading in the dress of books. 

In selecting courses for the development of a museum, it may be useful 
to consider what are the fields open to museum work. As a matter of 
convenience, museums are commonly classed in two groups—those of 
science and those of art—and in Great Britain the great national system 


76 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


is mainly under the control of The Science and Art Department of the 
Committee of Council on Education. 

This classification is not entirely satisfactory, since it is based upon 
methods of arrangement rather than upon the nature of the objects to be 
arranged, and since it leaves in a middle territory (only partially occu- 
pied by the English museum men of either department) a great mass 
-of museum material, of the greatest moment, both in regard to its inter- 
est and its adaptability for purposes of public instruction. 

On the other side stand the natural history collections, undoubtedly 
best to be administered by the geologist, botanist, and zoologist. On 
the other side are the fine-art collections, best to“be arranged, from an 
esthetic standpoint, by artists. Between is a territory which no English 
word can adequately describe—which the Germans call Culturgeschichte— 
the natural history of civilization, of man and his ideas and achieve- 
ments. ‘The museums of science and art have not yet learned how to 
partition this territory. 

An exact classification of museums is not at present practicable, nor 
will it be until there has been some redistribution of the collections 
which they contain. It may be instructive, however, to pass in review 
the principal museums of the world, indicating briefly their chief char- 
acteristics. 

Every great nation has its museum of natural history. ‘The natural 
history department of the British Museum, recently removed from the 
heart of London to palatial quarters in South Kensington, is probably 
the most extensive, with its three great divisions, zoological, botanical, 
and geological. 

_The historian and the naturalist have met upon common ground in 
the field of anthropology. The anthropologist is, in most cases, historian 
as well as naturalist; while the historian of to-day is always in some 
degree an anthropologist, and makes use of many of the methods at one 
time peculiar to the natural sciences. ‘The museum is no less essential 
to the study of anthropology than to that of natural history. The library 
formerly afforded to the historian all necessary opportunities for work. 
It would seem from the wording of the new charter of the American 
Historical Association that its members consider a museum to be one of 
its legitimate agencies. 

Your secretary has invited me to say something about the possibilities 
of utilizing museum methods for the promotion of historical studies. 
This I do with much hesitation, and I hope that my remarks may be 
considered as suggestions rather than as expressions of definite opinion. 
The art of museum administration is still in its infancy, and no attempt 
has yet been made to apply it systematically to the development of a 
museum of history. Experiment is as yet the museum administrator’s 
only guide, and he often finds his most cherished plans thoroughly 
impracticable. That museums can ever be made as useful to history as 


Museum-fiistory and Museums of [fistory. ay 


they are to physical science, their most enthusiastic friend dares not 
hope. ‘The two departments of science are too unlike. 

The historian studies events and their causes; the naturalist studies 
objects and the forces by which their existence is determined. ‘The 
naturalist may assemble in a museum objects from every quarter of the 

globe and from every period of the earth’s history. Much of his work 

is devoted to the observation of finished structure, and for this purpose 
his specimens are at all times ready. When, however, he finds it neces- 
sary to study his subject in other aspects, he may have recourse to the phys- 
ical, chemical, and physiological laboratories, the zoological and botanical 
gardens, and aquaria, which should form a part of every perfect museum 
system. Here, almost at will, the phenomena of nature may be scruti- 
nized and confirmed by repeated observation, while studies impractica- 
ble in the nursery may usually be made by members of its staff, who 
carry its appliances with them to the seashore or to distant lands. 

The requirements of the historian are very different. Nevertheless, I 
am confident that the museum may be made in his hands a most potent 
instrumentality for the promotion of historical studies. Its value is per- 
haps less fully realized than it would be were it not that so many of 
its functions are performed by the library. In the library may be found 
descriptive catalogues of all the great museums, and books by the 
hundred, copiously illustrated with pictures of the objects preserved in 
museums. A person trained to use books may by their aid reap the 
advantage of many museums without the necessity of a visit to one. 

The exhibition series would be proportionately larger in an historical 
than in a natural-history museum.. The study series of a historical 
museum would mostly be arranged in the form of a library, except in 
some special departments, such as numismatics, and when a library is 
near might be entirely dispensed with. 

The adoption of museum methods would be of advantage to the his- 
torian in still another way, by encouraging the preservation of historical 
material not at present sought for by librarians, and by inducing present 
owners of stich material to place it on exhibition in public museums. 

Although there is not in existence a general museum of history 
arranged on the comprehensive plan adopted by natural-history museums, 
there are still many historical collections of limited scope, which are all 
that could be asked, and more. 

The value to the historian of archzological collections, historic and 
prehistoric, has long been understood. ‘The museums of London, Paris, 
Berlin, and Rome need no comment. In Cambridge, New York, and 
Washington are immense collections of the remains of man in America 
in the pre-Columbian period—collections which are yearly growing in 
significance, as they are made the subject of investigation, and there is 
an immense amount of material of this kind in the hands of institutions 
and private collectors in all parts of the United States. 


78 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


The museum at Naples shows, sc far as a museum can, the history of 
Pompeii at one period. ‘The museum of St. Germain, near Paris, exhibits 
the history of France in the time of the Gauls and of the Roman occupa- 
tion. In Switzerland, especially at Neuchatel, the history of the inhab- 
itants of the Lake Dwellings is shown. 

American ethnological museums are preserving with care the memorials 
of the vanishing race of red men. ‘The George Catlin Indian Gallery, 
which is installed in the room in which this society is now meeting, is 
valuable beyond the possibility of appraisement, in that it is the sole 
record of the physical characters, the costumes, and the ceremonies of 
several tribes long extinct. 

Other countries recently settled by Europeans are preserving the 
memorials of the aboriginal races, notably the colonies in Australia and 
New Zealand. Japan is striving to preserve in its Government museum 
examples of the fast-disappearing memorials of feudal days. 

Ethnographic museums are especially numerous and fine in the 
northern part of Europe. ‘They were proposed more than half a century 
ago, by the French geographer, Jomard, and the idea was first carried 
into effect about 1840, on the establishment of the Danish Ethnographical 
Museum, which long remained the best in Europe. Within the past 
twenty years there is an extraordinary activity in this direction. 

In Germany, besides the chief museum in Berlin, considerable ethno- 
graphical collections have been founded in Hamburgand Munich. Aus- 
tria hasin Vienna two for ethnography, the Court Museum (Hof-Museum), 
and the Oriental (Orientalisches Museum). Holland has reorganized 
the National Ethnographical Museum (Ryks Ethnographisch Museum) 
in Leyden, and there are smaller collections in Amsterdam, Rotterdam, 
and The Hague. France has founded the Trocadero (Musée de Tro- 
cadero). In Italy there is the important Prehistoric and Ethnographic 
Museum (Museo preistorico ed ethnografico) in Rome, as well as the col- 
lection of the Propaganda, and there are museums in Florence and Venice. 

Ethnographical museums have also been founded in Christiania and 
Stockholm, the latter of which will include the rich material collection 
by Doctor Stolpe on the voyage of the frigate Vazadzs around the world. 

In England there is less attention to the subject, the Christy collection 
in the British Museum being the only one specially devoted to ethnog- 
raphy, unless we include also the local Blackmore Museum at Salisbury. 

In the United States the principal establishment arranged on the 
ethnographic plan is the Peabody Museum of Archzeology in Cambridge, 
and there are important smaller collections in the American Museum of 
Natural History in New York and the Peabody Academy of Sciences at 
Salem. ; 

The ethnological collections in Washington are classified on a double 
system, in one of its features corresponding to that of the European, in 
the other like the famous Pitt-Rivers collection at Oxford, arranged to 


Museum-fTistory and Museums of Fiistory. 79 


show the evolution of culture and civilization without regard to race. 
This broader plan admits much material excluded by the advocates of 
ethnographic museums, who devote their attention almost exclusively to 
the primitive or non-European peoples. 

In close relation to the ethnographic museums are those which are 
devoted to some special field of human thought and interest. Most 
remarkable among these probably is the Musée Guimet, recently 
removed from Lyons to Paris, which is intended to illustrate the history 
of religious ceremonial among all races of men. 

Other good examples of this class are some of those in Paris, such as 
the Musée de Marine, which shows not only the development of the 
merchant and naval marines of the country, but also, by trophies and 
other historical souvenirs, the history of the naval battles of the nation. 

The Musée d’Artillerie does for war, but less thoroughly, what the 
Marine Museum does in its own department, and there are similar 
museums in other countries. 

Historical museums are manifold in character, and of necessity local in 
interest. Some relate to the history of provinces or cities. One of the 
oldest and best of these is the Markisch Provinzial Museum in Berlin. 
Many historical societies have collections of this character. 

There are museums which illustrate the history of particular towns, 
events, and individuals. ‘The museum of the city of Paris, in the Hétel 
des Invalides, is one of these. ‘The museum of the Hohenzollerns, in 
Berlin, contains interesting mementos of the reigning family of Ger- 
many. ‘The cathedrals of southern Europe, and St. Paul’s, in London, 
are in some degrees national or civic museums. ‘The Galileo Museum 
in Florence, the Shakespeare Museum at Stratford, are good examples 
of the museums devoted to the memory of representative men and the 
Monastery of St. Mark, in Florence, does as much as could be expected 
of any museum for the life of Savonarola. The Soane Museum in Lon- 
don, the Thorvaldsen Museum in Copenhagen, are similar in purpose 
and result, but they are rather biographical than historical. ‘There are 
also others which illustrate the history of a race, as the Bavarian National 
Museum in Nuremberg. 

The study of civilization or the history of culture and of the develop- 
ments of the various arts and industries have brought into being special 
collections which are exceedingly significant and useful. Doctor Klemm 
and General Pitt-Rivers, in England, were pioneers in the founding of 
collections of this kind, and their work is permanently preserved in the 
Museum fiir Volkerkunde, in Leipzig and at the University of Oxford. 

Nearly every museum which admits ethnological material is doing 
something in this direction. ‘There are a number of beginnings of this 
sort in this very building. 

The best of the art museums are historically arranged and show 
admirably the development of the pictorial and plastic arts—some, like 


80 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


that in Venice, for a particular school; some that of a country, some that 
of different countries side by side. 

The art museum, it need scarcely be said, contains, more than any 
other, the materials which I should like to see utilized in the historical 
museum. 

Incidentally or by direct intention, a large collection of local paintings, 
such as those in Venice or Florence, brings vividly into mind the occur- 
rences of many periods of history, not only historical topography—the 
architecture, the utensils; weapons, and other appurtenances of domestic, 
military, ecclesiastical, and governmental routine—but the men and 
women who made the history, the lowest as well as the most powerful, 
and the very performers of the deeds themselves, the faces bearing the 
impress of the passions by which they were moved. 

These things are intelligible to those who are trained to observe them. 
To others they convey but half the lesson they might, or mayhap only a 
very small part indeed. 

The historical museums now in existence contain, as a rule, chance 
accumulations, like too many natural-history museums of the present, 
like allin the past. Idonot mean any disrespect by the word chance, but 
simply that, though the managers are willing to expend large sums for 
any specimens which please them, many most instructive ones have been 
excluded by some artificial limitation. ‘The National Portrait Gallery in 
London is an instance. Many illustrious men are not represented upon 
its walls solely because no contemporary pictures of theirs, reaching a 
certain ideal standard of merit, are in existence. 

So, also, the collection of musical instruments at South Kensington, 
which admits no specimen which is devoid of artistic suggestions— 
thus barring out the rude and primitive forms which would give added 
interest to all. The naturalist’s axiom, ‘‘any specimen is better than 
no specimen,’’ should be borne in mind in the formation of historical 
museums, if not rigidly enforced. 

Another source of weakness in all museums is one to which attention 
has already been directed, namely, that they have resigned, without a 
struggle, to the library material invaluable for the completion of their 
exhibition series. Pictures are quite as available for museum work as 
specimens, and it is unwise to leave so many finely illustrated books, lost 
to sight and memory, on the shelves of the libraries. 

That libraries can do good work through the adoption of museum 
methods has been clearly shown in the British Museum in the exceed- 
ingly instructive collections which have of late years been exhibited by 
its librarians, to illustrate such subjects as the livesof Luther and Michael 
Angelo, and by their permanent display of pictures and documents refer- 
ring to the history of London. 

The Dyce-Forster collection of autograph documents, letters, and 
manuscripts is also, in its own way, suggestive. Every large library has 


Report of U. S. National Museum, 1897. Part Il. PLATE 5 


ALEXANDER DALLAS BACHE. 


Museum-Fiistory and Museums of Frstory. 81 


done something of this kindin itsown way. It remains for some student 
of history to work out upon a generous plan, and with plenty of exhibi- 
tion space at his command, the resources which are already in the posses- 
sion of some great treasure-house like the British Museum. 

What the limitations of historical museums are to be it is impossible 
at present to predict. In museum administration experience is the only 
safe guide. In the scientific museum many things have been tried, and 
many things are known to be possible. . In the historical museum most 
of this experimental administration still remains to be performed. The 
principal object of this communication is to call attention to the general 
direction in which experiment should be made. 

The only safe course to be pursued in the development of plans in any 
untried department of museum work is to follow the advice which the 
Apostle Paul proffered to the Thessalonians: 

‘Prove all things; hold fast that which is good!”’ 


6 


NAT MUS 97, PT 2 


THE GENESIS OF THE UNITED STATES NATIONAL MUSEUM 
BY 


GEORGE BROWN GOODE, 


Assistant Secretary, Smithsonian Institution, in charge 
of the U. S. National Museum. 


83 


=e] 


wie ve tie oe 


THE GENESIS OF THE UNITED STATES NATIONAL MUSEUM 


By GORGE BROWN GOODE, 


Assistant Secretary, Smithsonian Institution, in charge of the U. S. National 
Museum. 


When, in 1826, James Smithson bequeathed his estate to the United 
States of America ‘‘to found at Washington, under the name of the 
Smithsonian Institution, an establishment for the increase and diffusion 
of knowledge among men,’’ he placed at the disposal of our nation two 
valuable collections—one of books and one of minerals. 

In the schedule of Smithson’s personal effects, as brought to America 
in 1838, occurs the following entry : 

Two large boxes filled with specimens of minerals and manuscript treatises, 


apparently in the testator’s handwriting, on various philosophical subjects, particu- 
larly chemistry and mineralogy. Eight cases and one trunk filled with the like. 


This collection and the books and pamphlets mentioned in the same 
schedule formed the beginnings, respectively, of the Smithsonian library 
and the Smithsonian museum. ‘The minerals constituted, so far as the 
writer has been able to learn, the first scientific cabinet owned by the 
Government of the United States. Their destruction in the Smithsonian 
fire of 1865 was a serious loss. Our only knowledge of their character 
is derived from the report of a committee of the National Institution, 
which in 1841 reported upon it as follows :* 

Among the effects of the late Mr. Smithson, is a Cabinet which, so far as it has 
been examined, proves to consist of a choice and beautiful collection of Minerals, 
comprising, probably, eight or ten thousand specimens. The specimens, though 
generally small, are extremely perfect, and constitute a very complete Geological 


and Mineralogical series ¢ embracing the finest varieties of crystallization ; rendered 
more valuable by accompanying figures and descriptions by Mr. Smithson, and in 


™Proceedings of the National Institution, July, 1841, 2d Bull., p. 95. Francis 
Markoe, jr., secretary of the National Institution, in a letter written to the Amer- 
ican Philosophical Society in 1841, described as a part of this cabinet ‘‘a superb 
collection, and very large, of precious stones and exquisite crystallized minerals 

decidedly the richest and rarest collection in the country.”’ 

For a catalogue in general terms see Alfred Hunter, Popular Catalogue of the 
Extraordinary Curiosities in the National Institute, etc., published in 1855, and 
William J. Rhees, Account of the Smithsonian Institution, etc., 1859. 

85 


86 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


his own hand-writing. The cabinet also contains a valuable suite of meteoric 
stones, which appear to be specimens of most of the meteorites which have fallen 
in Europe during several centuries. 


This report was made in July, 1841, at the time when, by order of the 
Secretary of the United States Treasury, the minerals, books, manu- 
scripts, and other articles forming part of the Smithson bequest, were 
deposited in the custody of the National Institution, where they remained 
until 1858. 

A room had been planned for their reception in the Smithsonian edi- 
fice, which was to be made fireproof,* but if this was ever constructed it 
was not occupied, and the collections having been displayed for some 
years in the Regents’ room, were destroyed by fire January 24, 1865. 

The National Institution was for nearly eighteen years the official 
custodian of these and other museum materials belonging to the nation. 
This organization, ten years before the Smithsonian Institution was pre- 
pared to receive any collections whatever, fourteen years before its build- 
ings were ready for the exhibition of museum objects, and in after years, 
until its charter expired by limitation in 1862, held many objects whose 
proper place was in the National Museum. Indeed, the retention of 
many historical objects in the Patent Office hall until 1883, was an evi- 
dence of a lingering uncertainty as to the proper location of responsibility 
for the care of the national collections. 

In order to understand the genesis of the National Museum of the 
United States, it seems necessary to examine the history of this society, 
at one time so enterprising and influential. 

The National Institution for the Promotion of Science, organized in 
Washington, May 15, 1840, was for some years the most prominent 
exponent of the idea of a national museum.* The establishment of this 
society was doubtless to a very great degree due to the stimulating and 
inspiring effects upon public opinion of the Smithson bequest. The 
germs of the idea which it represented seem, however, to have been 
existing in Washington at a much earlier period, for in 1816, or before, 
a similar society had been organized in the capital under the name of 
The Columbian Institute for the Promotion of Arts and Sciences.? 

The Columbian Institute received on May 20, 1818, a charter from 
Congress which expired in 1838, after which its members ‘‘ were invited 


«Report of the building committee to December 1, 1847, in Report of the Board 
of Regents, January 6, 1848, Thirtieth Congress, first session, Mis. Doc. 23, p. 8. 

2The National Institution was organized at the seat of Government on the 15th of 
May, 1840, by the adoption of a Constitution and the declaration of the objects of 
the Institution; which are to promote Science and the Useful Arts, and to establish 
a National Museum of Natural History, etc.—Proceedings of the National Insti- 
tution, 1841, 1st Bull., p. 3. 

3Before 1816 an organization known as The Metropolitan Society was in existence 
in Washington, and the Columbian Institute was an outgrowth of it or replaced it. 
The United States Military Philosophical Society met in Washington and New York 
as early as 1805. 


Report of U. S, National Museum, 1897. Part Il. PLATE 6. 


SPENCER FULLERTON BAIRD. 


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The Genesis of the United States Nattonal Museum. 87 


to become members of the National Institution, and to deposit in its 
Cabinet their effects, books, and papers.’’* 

This invitation was accepted July 17, 1841,’in a letter from Asbury 
Dickins, secretary, and although no record of any transfer is to be found 
in the Bulletin of the National Institution, I have before me a letter 
from Messrs. John J. Abert, A. O. Dayton, and F. A. Markoe, com- 
mittee of that society, addressed to the Secretaries of the War and Navy 
Departments, January 1, 1842, in which, among the other collections in 
their custody, they mention ‘‘the books, minerals, and works of art 
belonging to the late Columbian Institute,’’ and also the ‘‘ books, papers, 
and proceedings of the late American Historical Society,’’ an organiza- 
tion to which also the National Institution stood in the position of an 
heir. 

To Doctor Edward Cutbush is due the preservation of the only state- 
ment extant of the objects of the Columbian Institute, embodied ap- 
parently in its constitution, and quoted as follows in his address as its 
president, delivered January 11, 1817, in Congress Hall, Washington:? 


To collect, cultivate, and distribute the various vegetable productions of this and 
other countries, whether medicinal or esculent, or for the promotion of arts and 
manfactures. 

To collect and examine the various mineral productions and natural curiosities of 
the United States, and to give publicity to every discovery that the institute may 
have been enabled to make. 

To obtain information respecting the mineral waters of the United States, their 
locality, analysis, and utility, together with such topographical remarks as may aid 
valetudinarians. 

To invite communications on agricultural subjects, on the management of stock, 
their diseases, and the remedies. 

To form a topographical and statistical history of the different districts of the 
United States, noticing particularly the number and extent of streams, how far navi- 
gable, the agricultural products, the imports and exports, the value of lands, the 
climate, the state of the thermometer and barometer, the diseases which prevail in 
the different seasons, the state of the arts and manufactures, and any other informa- 
tion which may be deemed of general utility. 

To publish annually, or whenever the Institution shall have become possessed of 
a sufficient stock of important information, such communications as may be of public 
utility, and to give the earliest information in the public papers of all discoveries 
that may have been made by or communicated to the Institute. 


* Proceedings of the National Institution, July 12, 1841, 2d Bull., p. 94. 

*Idem., p. (13. 

3Cutbush, Edward. An address | delivered before the | Columbian Institute, | for 
the Promotion of Arts and Sciences, | at the City of Washington, | on the 11th Janu- 
ary, 1817. | —— | By Edward Cutbush, M. D., | Hon. Member of the Philadelphia 
Medical and Chemical Societies; | Corresponding Member of the Linnzan Society 
of Philadelphia; | and President of the Institute. | —— | Published by the request 
of the Columbian Institute, | —— | Washington. | Printed by Gales & Seaton. | Six 
parts | 1817. 8vo., pp. I-29. 

A copy of this rare pamphlet is in the library of the Surgeon-General’s Office, as 
well as a nearly complete series of the publications of the two brothers Cutbush. 


88 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


A remark significant in this connection may be found in a letter 
written by Edward Cutbush, M. D., dated Geneva, New York, January 20, 
1842, accepting his election to corresponding membership in the National 
Institution. After thanking the institution ‘‘for this memento of their 
friendship and recognition of past services in the cause which has been 
so honorably revived at the seat of Government,’’ he continued thus: ‘‘I 
most sincerely hope that all the objects which engaged the attention of 
Thomas Law, Esq.,* and myself, in 1816, in establishing the Columbian 
Institute will ow meet the approbation and support of the Governnient, 
and of the scientific men of the Distriet of Columbia.’’* 


‘Proceedings of the National Institution, 1842, 2d Bull., p. 156. 

2Thomas Law was a member of an English family of talent and influence. His 
father, Edmund Law, D. D., born in Cartmel, Lancashire, in 1703, educated at St. 
John’s College, Cambridge, was author of several theological and philosophical works, 
and in 1769 became Bishop of Carlisle, holding this office till his death in 1787. Of 
his younger brothers, one was Bishop of Elphin, another, George Henry Law, D. D., 
(1761-1845) was Bishop of Chester, 1812, and later, 1824, of Bath and Wells. [Bio- 
graphical Sketch in Gentleman’s Magazine, 1845, Pt. 2, p. 529.] His elder brother, 
Edward Law—Lord Ellenborough—(1750-1818) was an eminent lawyer, principal 
counsel for Warren Hastings in the great impeachment trial before the House of 
Lords, Attorney-General and Lord Chief Justice of the King’s Bench,and was father 
of Edward Law, Earl of Ellenborough (1790-1871), Governor-General of India. 

Thomas Law was born in 1756, and in 1773, at the age of seventeen, entered the 
service of the British East India Company in Bengal, and was rapidly promoted, 
becoming member of the revenue board of Hugli before he was twenty-one, later 
judge of Poonah, and in 1783 collector, judge, and magistrate of Behar, a province 
with more than 2,000,000 inhabitants, an office which he administered for six years 
with great success, afterwards, at the request of Lord Cornwallis, the Governor-Gen- 
eral, then engaged in his campaign against Tippoo Saib, serving for two years on the 
revenue board at Calcutta. In 1791, his health having failed, he sailed for England, 
where he remained until 1793, the year of his removal to America. 

While in India he was the friend and associate of Lord Cornwallis, Lord Tergue- 
nett, and Sir William Jones, and was the author of what was known as the Mocur- 
rery system and permanent settlement, a great legislative reform, the accomplishment 
of which was the principal feature of Cornwallis’s administration, which the board 
of control of the East India Company described as ‘‘forming a new epoch in Hin- 
dostan, from which, they predict, will be derived security and permanent prosperity, 
and consider it as an important and most beneficial change to 50,000,000 of people, 
and full of beneficial consequences.”’ 

William Duane, the editor of the Philadelphia Aurora, who had known Mr. Law 
in India, wrote thus concerning him in 1815: 

‘‘We have known Mr. Law now more than thirty years. We knew him when he 
was inferior to no man in eminence and in power, the third or fourth in degree in a 
great empire; and this was at a time, too, when, by his own generous efforts, pursued 
with zeal and talent that commanded general admiration and esteem, he brought 
about a revolution, the influence of which now extends to one hundred and twenty 
millions of people, as great in its moral and political influences as the extinction of 
the feudal system. In Hindostan, under the Mogul government, the tenure of land 
was in the Empire and reverted upon the demise of the holder. ‘The afflictions pro- 
duced by such a system can not be conceived by those who have not been eye-wit- 
nesses of them. Upon the death of a zuinndar, or landholder, where polygamy 


The Genesis of the United States National Museum. 89 


The idea of a subsidy from the General Government seems to have 
been prominent in the minds of the founders of the Columbian Institute. 
In the.closing portion of the same address Doctor Cutbush naively 
remarked as follows: 


I can not refrain from indulging in the pleasing hope that the members of our 
National Government, to whom has been confided the guardianship of the District 
of Columbia, will extend their fostering care to this establishment, and that a part 
of the public grounds, reserved for national purposes, may be vested in the Colum- 
bian Institute. I would also, with due deference, suggest that a small pecuniary 
aid would enable the Institute at an earlier period to extend its benefits to all parts 
of the United States, and to render an essential service to the nation by perpetuating 
an establishment worthy of the metropolis bearing the name of our illustrious Wash- 
ington, where at some future period the youth of our country will repair to complete 
their education at the national seminary, to which the Botanical Garden and Miner- 
alogical Cabinet would be important appendages. 


prevails and the children and females are numerous, the death of the head of the 
family, where no provision has been otherwise made, can not be wellimagined. Mr. 
Law, who held the government of a rich and populous province under the Bengal 
administration, proposed what has been called the Mocurrery system, that is to 
make the land personal property and not to revert to the sovereign. This plan, pur- 
sued through several years of zeal and devotion to humanity, he accomplished. The 
Norman conquest, the revolution in England in 1688, were great events, and they 
mark epochs in history and are treated as such, while Mr. Law’s revolution without 
bloodshed eventually changed the whole moral and social condition of Hindostan, 
settled estates in persons and as personal property, and put an end to all the calami- 
ties which were consequent of the old system; yet the event is scarcely heard of; 
perhaps there are not three men in this country who ever heard of it yet.’’ 

In a letter written to Law by Marquis Cornwallis in 1796, he said: ‘‘We labored 
together for the security of person and property to the subjects of the British Goy- 
ernment in Asia,’’ and referred to ‘‘that plan of which I shall ever with gratitude 
_ acknowledge you as the founder.”’ 

Another reform suggested by Mr. Law was in connection with the commercial 
relations of India with England. Concerning this Mr. Law writes, in 1824: 

““The augmented wealth and prosperity of many of the natives of India since I 
quitted Bengal is evinced by commercial events and improvements, some of which 
have fulfilled my anticipations, when I proposed to the company, and was urgent 
with them, to throw open and enlarge new branches of trade originally in India. 
Cotton and sugar are now imported thence into England, and British manufactures 
have been exported to pay for these new and rich Asiatic cargoes, and this to an 
amount that in 1815 was estimated at £870,177. Five years afterwards, in 1819, the 
value of such manufactures exported to India exceeded three millions sterling.’’ 

One of the results of this Indian reform was doubtless the abolition at so early a 
day of negro slavery in the British West Indies. 

Another of his reforms was that effected when at an early age he was governor of 
Behar, and which was perhaps his chief popular title to the appellation of ‘‘ Father 
of the People.’’ The capital of Behar is as much venerated by the Hindus as Mecca 
by the Mohammedans. Pilgrims annually resort to it from all parts of India. These 
pilgrims had been oppressed by heavy taxes ever since the establishment of the 
Mohammedan Government—taxes imposed according to the apparent dignity of the 
pilgrims, which was rated by the number of their animals, and the palanquins, horses, 
_ or elephants which accompanied them. When Mr. Law became collector the exac- 
tions were so onerous that many Hindus were deterred from fulfilling their religious 


go Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


Cutbush’s address before the Columbian Institute, nearly three- 
quarters of a century ago, is well worthy of study at the present time. 
It is full of enlightened patriotism and of hopeful prophecy for the United 
States and for Washington. ‘‘Where genius and talent are respected, 
rewarded, and promoted,’’ wrote he, ‘‘the arts and sciences will flourish 
and the wealth and power of the nation increase.’’ 

The wisdom of such men as Cutbush opened the way for the organi- 
zation of the National Institution, which in its turn, as we shall see, had 


usages, but through his efforts the taxes were diminished to a moderate sum, a 
greater number of pilgrims would pay it, and, while the demands of the revenue 
were fulfilled, ‘‘ purposes of humanity were forwarded and the pious feelings of the 
natives were gratified.’’ [Law’s ‘‘ Reply,”’ p. 7.] 

Mr. Law’s removal from England was due in part to an act of injustice on the part 
of the East India Company, which resulted in considerable financial loss to himself, 
and in part to his ‘‘decided disapprobation of an impolitic and exhausting war that 
the administration was then carrying on against France.”’ 

He conceived a great admiration for the character of Washington, and when he 
knew of the efforts being made to establish a national capital, he became anxious to 
identify himself with its growth from the very beginning. 

He invested all of his property in houses and lots in Washington, and for forty 
years was one of the most zealous and enlightened citizens. 

S. L. Knapp (Ignatius Loyola Robertson, LL.D.) wrote of him in 1830 in his 
Sketches of Public Characters: 

‘*He purchased largely of the soil, built on an extensive scale, suggested ten thou- 
sand plans for the improvement of the city and for the prosperity of the nation; but 
the slow, doubtful, and often strange course of Congress came not only in his way, 
but in the way of all those deeply interested in the welfare of the city; and he has 
spent the days of his maturity and wisdom in unavailing efforts for the improvement 
of it. It is happy for him, however, that he has lived to see the dawn of a better 
day for Washington, and, if he can not stay here long to enjoy it, he will rejoice in 
the hopes of his friends and descendants.’’ 

Among the enterprises in which he participated at an early day was the erection 
of the great building south of the Capitol which has for so many years borne the 
inscription ‘‘ Law House.”’ 

Three sons, born in India, accompanied Mr. Law to America, one of whom, Mr. 
John Law, a lawyer in Washington, died before 1824, and all before 1834. 

Mr. Law married, as second wife, Miss Custis, daughter of George Washington 
Parke Custis, the stepson and adopted son of Washington, thus allying himself by 
family ties with the man whom he so much revered. 

Mr. Law was a zealous advocate of a national paper currency and published a 
book on currency. 

He also wrote poetry and contributed to general literature. 

He was one of the leaders in the intellectual life of the infant capital, and not- 
withstanding his personal eccentricities was universally respected. As one of the 
founders of the first learned society in Washington, he is worthy of our veneration ; 
and since he has been ignored by the biographical dictionaries this notice of his life 
has been written. 

He died in 1834. 

Reference to Mr. Law’s character and career may be found in an obituary in the 
National Intelligencer, 1834, quoted in the New England Magazine, September, 1834, 
in Sketches of Public Characters, by ‘‘Ignatius Loyola Robertson”’ (S. Ll. Knapp) in 


Report of U, S. National Museum, 1897, Part II. PLATE 7. 


JOEL BARLOW. 


The Genesis of the United States National Museum. gI 


an important influence toward shaping the course of the Smithsonian 
Institution. 

Indeed, the germ of the Smithsonian idea may be found in Cutbush’s 
address—and his spirit was kindred to that of Henry and his associates, 
who worked under more favorable conditions thirty years later.’ 


the biographical sketch of William Winston Seaton, by his daughter, and in Faux’s 

Memorable Days in America, the review of which in No. 68 of the Quarterly Review 

evoked Mr. Law’s ‘“‘Reply,’’? which contains much autobiographical matter. 

The following are titles of some of Mr. Law’s publications, for the verbal accuracy 
of which no responsibility is taken, since they are usually given second-hand: 

1792. LAw, THomas. Sketch of some late arrangements and a review of the rising 
resources of Bengal. London, 1792. 8°. Lib. Congress. 

1794. LAW, THomas. ‘‘On Bengal,’’ etc. Perhaps another ed. of* that printed in 
1792. Quoted by Allibone. 

1806. [LAw, THOMAS.] Ballston Spring. [A poem.] New York, 1806. Boston 
Ath. 

1820. LAw, THoMAS. Remarks on the report of the Secretary of the Treasury, 
March 1, 1819. Wilmington, 1820. 8°. Boston Ath. 

1824. LAw, THomas. A reply to certain insinuations, published as an article in the 
sixty-eighth number of the Quarterly Review. Washington, 1827. 8°. pp. 
1-27. (1.) Lib. Cong. Refers to a libelous article; a review of Faux’s 
Memorable Days in America. 

1827. LAw, THoMAS (and others). Report of the proceedings of the committee 
appointed in Washington in 1824 to present a memorial to Congress, pray- 
ing for the establishment of a national currency. Washington: Way & 
Gideon. 1824. 8°. 4opp. Lib. Cong.; Boston Ath. 

1825. Law, THomMaAs. Address before the Columbian Institute. Washington, 1825. 
8°. Boston Ath. 

1826. Law, THOMAS. Considerations tending to render the policy questionable of 
plans for liquidating, within the next four years, of the 6 per cent stocks 
of the United States. Washington: S.A. Elliott. 1826. 8°. pp. 22. Lib. 

; Cong.; Boston Ath. 

1827. LAw, THOMAS. Propositions for creating means for commencing the Chesa- 
peake and Ohio Canal, with report of committee thereon. [Washington, 
1827?] 1 folio sheet. Lib. Cong. 

1828. LAw, THomas. Address to the Columbian Institute on a moneyed system. 
Washington, 1828. 8°. Lib. Cong.; Boston Ath. 

1830. Law, THomaAs. Address to the Columbian Institute on the question, ‘‘ What 
ought to be the circulating medium of a nation?’ Washington, 1830. 8°. 
Lib. Cong.; Boston Ath. 

1833. Law, THomaAsS. Synopsis of a plan for a national currency. Washington, 
1833. 8°. Lib. Cong. 

The two brothers James and Edward Cutbush were among the most active of the 
popular teachers and promoters of science and education at the beginning of the 
present century, and it would be unjust to allow their names to drop out of the his- 
tory of American science. 

Both were physicians, both teachers of chemistry, both enthusiastic in the work 
of founding schools and learned societies. They were born, certainly in Pennsyl- 
vania, probably Philadelphia, somewhere between the years 1750and 1770. Edward 
entered the medical department of the University of Pennsylvania in 1790 and 
graduated in 1794, and his brother James at about the same time or a little later. 
James Cutbush at the beginning of the century, and for a few years subsequent, 


Q2 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


The National Institution began its career at a time when the country 
was chafing under the irritation of the delays of Congress in organizing 


was engaged in delivering courses of chemical lectures in Philadelphia, presumably 
for the benefit of medical students. 

He appears to have enlisted as a volunteer in a Pennsylvania regiment at the 
beginning of the war of 1812, and at its close, on the 12th of August, 1814, was 
appointed assistant apothecary-general in the Regular Army of the United States, 
which position he held until 1820, when he was appointed post surgeon and chief 
medical officer of the Military Academy at West Point. In November, 1821, he was 
made assistant surgeon and acting professor of chemistry and mineralogy in the 
Academy, in which capacity he served until his death, which occurred on December 
15, 1823. 

His most important work, A System of Pyrotechny (8vo., Philadelphia, 1825, i—xliv, 
1-612), was published in Philadelphia after his death by his widow, aided by a sub- 
scription from the cadets of the Military Academy. 

Another work, entitled The Philosophy of Experimental Chemistry, in two vol- 
umes (Philadelphia, 1813, 12mo., (1) pp. xii, 1-356 (2) i-vili, 1-339), appears to have 
been the earliest general work or text-book on chemistry written in America, 
although Benjamin Rush had printed a syllabus of his lectures which gave him the 
title to be considered ‘‘the father of chemistry in America,’’ and James Cutbush 
himself had, as early as 1807 or 1808, prepared an Epitome of Chemistry, for the use 
of St. John’s College, in which he was a teacher, of the publication of which, how- 
ever, I have found no record. 

In 1812 he delivered an Oration on Education (Philadelphia, 1812, 8vo., pp.1-50), 
before the Society for the Promotion of a Rational System of Education, of which 
he was vice-president --an enlightened and eloquent address full of historical infor- 
mation. He also published in 1808 a book called The Useful Cabinet, a treatise 
‘‘On hydrostatics and specific gravity,’ and also certain papers in the American 
Journal of Science. 

Besides holding a corresponding membership in the Columbian Institute at Wash- 
ington, which was founded by his brother, he was president of the Columbian Chem- 
ical Society and member of the Linnzean and Agricultural societies of Philadelphia. 
Rafinesque, enumerating in 1817 those of the American scientific men whom he con- 
sidered entitled to rank as philosophers, mentions the name of Cutbush along with 
his own and those of Jefferson, Clinton, Vaughan, Bentley, Winthrop, Patterson, 
Williamson, Griscom, Wood, Dupont, Woodward, Rush, Mitchill, Ramsay, and 
Priestley. 

Edward Cutbush, after his graduation at the Philadelphia Medical School in 1794, 
became attached to the militia of Pennsylvania, first as hospital surgeon and subse- 
quently as surgeon-general. On the 24th of June, 1799, he was appointed a surgeon 
in the United States Navy, in which capacity he served until June 20, 1829, when he 
resigned. Inthe years 1816 and 1817 he appears to have been stationed in Wash- 
ington, and at this time participated in the foundation of the Columbian Institute 
for the Promotion of Science. I can find no record of his whereabouts after 1829 
until 1835, when he was a resident of Geneva, New York, and participated in the 
establishment of the medical institute of Geneva College, in which he became pro- 
fessor of chemistry. On the occasion of its formal opening, on February Io, 1835, 
he delivered a discourse ‘‘On the history and methods of medical instruction”’ 
(Geneva, 1835, 8vo., pp. I-24). In 1842 he appears to have been still at Geneva, and 
at this time was probably a man seventy or eighty years of age. His Washington 
address and his Geneva address appear to be his only literary remains, with the 
exception of a book which was published in Philadelphia in 1808 entitled Observa- 
tions on the Means of Preserving the Health of Soldiers and Sailors, etc. (Phila- 
delphia, 1808, 8vo., pp. i-xvi, I-316, I-14). 


The Genests of the United States National Museum. 93 


the institution of learning provided by Smithson, whose legacy had for 
some years been deposited in the Treasury." 

It has already been suggested that the National Institution owed its 
origin to the influence of the Smithson bequest. Indeed, it may not be 
altogether impossible that it was founded with special reference to some 
plan looking toward securing the control of this bequest. 

Although less than fifty years have gone by, I can not learn that any 
of those who were active members at the time of its organization are 
still living, and unfortunately no one seems to have left any written record 
of the secret history of this very significant movement. 

It seems possible, however, to read between the lines, in the official 
publications of the society and the utterances of its friends, and thereby 
to acquire a certain additional insight into their meaning. 

With this in mind, it is instructive to review briefly the history of the 
discussions which preceded the final organization of the Smithsonian 
Institution—not with reference to its entire policy, for this has already 
been well done by others, but in connection with its relations to the 
national institution, and the custodianship of the National Museum. 

In 1835, as we have seen, the fact was first made known that Smithson, 
who had died in Genoa, six years earlier, had bequeathed the reversion 
of his whole estate to the United States of America ‘‘to found at Wash- 
ington, under the name of the Smithsonian Institution, an establishment 
for the increase and diffusion of knowledge among men.”’ 

The bequest was communicated to Congress by the President on the 
17th of December, and was accepted by Congress by an act approved 
July 1, 1836, pledging ‘‘the faith of the United States’’ to the due appli- 
cation of the fund to the purposes of the bequest. 

On the 1st of September, 1838, the proceeds of the estate, amounting 
to $508,318.46, was paid into the United States Mint, and shortly after 
the convening of Congress in that year, in a message dated December 6, 
President Van Buren informed both Houses that the amount received 
having been invested, he deemed it proper to invite the attention of Con- 
gress to the obligation devolving upon the United States to fulfill the 
object of the bequest. 

Hight sessions of Congress passed by before any definite plan of organ- 
ization was decided upon, and suggestions from all parts of the country 
were liberally forthcoming. Strange to say, nearly every suggestion, no 


* Smithson had died in 1829, but the legacy did not become available until after 
the death of his nephew, the residuary legatee, in 1835, after which, in September 
of that year, the Government of the United States was first apprised of the fact of 
the existence of such a bequest. The legacy was brought to New York in August, 
1838, but no definite action was taken concerning its application until eight years 
later, when on August 10, 1846, the act of Congress establishing the Smithsonian 
. Institution was passed. The Regents held their first meeting September 7, 1846, 
.and elected a secretary, who accepted the trust on December 7, and entered upon 

his duties two weeks later, 


94 Memortal of George Brown Goode. 


matter how humble its source, seems to have had its weight in the delib- 
erations, and almost every one was embodied in one or more of the provi- 
sions of the numerous bills brought up for the consideration of Congress. 

In 1836, when this matter first came to the notice of the Senate, it 
seems to have been the generally accepted opinion of those who took part 
in the discussion that the intention of the testator was the establishing 
of a university. 

In this direction, too, was the tendency of the advice of those ‘‘ persons 
versed in science and in matters relating to public education,’’ to whom 
in July, 1838, the Secretary of State addressed letters, asking advice as 
to the most advantageous mode of applying the proceeds of the bequest.’ 

Of these, three favored a school of high grade. President Wayland, 
an institution which should occupy ‘‘the space between the close of a 
collegiate education and a professional school ;’? Doctor Cooper, ‘‘an insti- 
tution of the character of an university;’’ President Chapin, ‘‘an institu- 
tion for liberal and professional purposes and for the promotion of original 
-nvestigations—to carry scholars through a range of studies much above 
those of the ordinary collegiate course.’’ 

Horatio Hubbell, of Philadelphia, also, in a letter to President Van 
Buren, urged a university on the German plan, with numerous professor- 
ships, chiefly scientific, and Professor Dunglison, of the University of 
Virginia, in two very favorable letters in the Southern Literary Messen- 
ger (under the signature ‘‘4’’), proposed the foundation of ‘‘a central 
school of natural science,’’ to be supplemented in time by a botanical 
garden, an observatory, a zoological institute, or analogous means (includ- 
ing, doubtless, in his mind, museum collections), for prosecuting in a 
proper way the great sciences of astronomy and general physiology—‘‘a 
school where natural philosophy, chemistry, geology, mineralogy, phi- 
losophy, and all other sciences could be effectually taught—a school 
which, so far from clashing with others, would aid them—which, although 
it might be helped by a gift of funds from the nation, could neverthe- 
less go into operation without them—which, under a wise management, 
could be speedily brought to yield results of the utmost practical import- 
ance, and fulfill to the very letter the wishes of the testator.’’? 

Mr. Rush objected to a school of any kind, and proposed a plan which 
more nearly than any other of the early ones corresponded with that 
which was finally adopted. In a shadowy way he outlined a system of 
scientific correspondence, of lectureships, of general cooperation with the 
scientific efforts of the Government, of a liberal system of publication, 


* These are the names of the persons thus addressed : 

The Hon. John Quincy Adams, Senator and ex-President ; Thomas Cooper, M. D., 
Columbia, South Carolina; Hon. Richard Rush, Sydenham, near Philadelphia, Penn- 
sylvania; Professor Francis Wayland, President of Brown University, Providence, 
Rhode Island ; Hon. Albert Gallatin, Rev. Stephen Olin, Philip Lindsley, and others. 

*Southern Literary Messenger, V, 1838, p. 828; VI, 1840, p. 25, and also Rhees, 
Documents, pp. 864-890, 


Report of U. S. National Museum, 1897. Part Il. PLATE 8. 


The Genests of the United States National Museum. 95 


and even of collections of geological, zoological, botanical, ethnological, 
and economical objects. 

The fifth response was from the venerable Senator and ex-President, 
John Quincy Adams, who, from 1835, when he was appointed chairman 
of the select committee of "the House to report upon the Smithson 
bequest, appears to have taken a deep interest in its fate, and to have 
felt personally responsible for its judicious administration. In his letters 
to the Secretary of State, October 8 and 11, 1838, he brought forward 
with great vigor the proposal that the first use to be made of the fund 
was the establishment of a great national astronomical observatory, and 
in January, 1839, as chairman of the House committee, acting jointly 
with a similar committee from the Senate, he reported a bill (House bill 
I161, Senate bill 293) providing for the establishment of an observatory 
fully equipped, with provision for the publication of its observations, and 
the annual composition and publication of a nautical almanac. 

The bill, which was evidently a minority report of the joint committee, 
was reinforced by two sets of resolutions, proposed by Mr. Adams in the 
House, one reported from the committee January 26, providing— 

That the first appropriation from the interest, or income, of the Smithsonian fund, 
ought to be for the erection and establishment, at the city of Washington, of an 
astronomical observatory, provided with the best and most approved instruments 
and books for the continual observation, calculation and recording of the remark- 
able phenomena of the heavens; for the periodical publication of the observations 


thus made; and of a nautical almanac for the use of the mariners of the United 
States and of all other navigating nations. 


The second, reported February 6, recited the opinion— 


That the education of the children of these United States is a duty of solemn 
and indispensable obligation incumbent upon their parents and guardians, not for 
the increase and diffusion of knowledge among men, but to qualify them for the 
enjoyment of their rights, and the performance of their duties throughout life [and 
therefore] 

That no part of the Smithsonian fund ought to be applied to the education of the 
children or youth of the United States, nor to any school, college, university, or 
institute of education. 


The latter resolutions were evidently intended as a counterpoise to the 
view still held by many members of the Senate, which was brought for- 
ward by the speech of Senator Asher Robbins, of Rhode Island, January 
10, 1839, in which he urged ‘‘that this institution should make one of a 
number of colleges to constitute a university to be established here, and 
to be endowed in a manner worthy of this great nation and their immense 
resources,”’ 

On the 18th of February Senator Robbins produced an antidote to Mr. 
Adam’s anti-university resolution in the following: 

1. Kesolved, That it is the duty of the United States, they having accepted the 


trust under the will of Mr. Smithson, of London, to execute that trust dona fide 
according to the true intent and meaning of the testator, 


96 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


2. Resolved, That the trust being to found an institution in the city of Washington 
for the increase and diffusion of knowledge among men, the kind of institution 
which will have the effect intended and described, in the most eminent degree, will 
be the kind of institution which ought, in good faith to be adopted, as being most in 
accordance with the true intent and meaning of the testator. 

3. Resolved, That all experience having shown scientific and literary institutions 
to be by far, the most effectual means to the end of increasing and diffusing knowl- 
edge among men, the Smithsonian Institution should be a scientific and literary 
institution, formed upon a model the best calculated to make those means the most 
effectual to that end. 

4. Resolved, That to apply said trust fund to the erection and support of an obsery- 
atory, would not be to fulfill ova fide the intention of the testator, nor would 
it comport with the dignity of the United States to owe such an establishment to 
foreign eleemosynary means. 


Neither of the bills was received with favor, and the Twenty-fifth Con- 
gress came to an end without any decision having been reached. Senator 
Robbins retired from public life at this time, and the university idea was 
not subsequently brought prominently forward. During this session, 
however, various petitions were received. One was from Professor 
Walter R. Johnson, urging the foundation, advocating the claims of ‘‘an 
institution for researches in practical science.’’ * 

Another was from Charles Lewis Fleischmann, of the United States 
Patent Office, proposing the establishment of an institution for the 
promotion of agriculture, with experimental farms of 1,360 acres, manu- 
factories, mills, and workshops, a considerable staff of teachers and 
instructors, and one hundred students at the commencement.’ 

The Kentucky State Agricultural Society petitioned for the endowment 
of an agricultural school or college out of the legacy, and the Superin- 
tendent of the Coast Survey, Mr. Hassler, was urging the foundation of 
an astronomical school. 

In the meantime public interest was becoming awakened. The matter 
was agitated in the newspapers and reviews, petitions were coming in 
from individuals, urging speedy action, and the corporation of the city 
of Washington, through their mayor, Peter Force, presented a vigorously 
worded memorial to Congress. 

Early in the first session of the T'wenty-sixth Congress, 1839-1841, 
Mr. Adams again brought up the Smithson bequest, introducing again 
his bill for the establishment of a national observatory and reenforcing it 
by his famous report of 18404 and a speech of considerable length, supple- 
mented by an elaborate statement from the astronomer royal of Great 
Britain concerning the observatories at Greenwich and elsewhere. 


* Presented to the House of Representatives, May, 21, 1838.—See Rhees, Documents, 
pp. 171-186. 

?Reported to the House of Representatives January 9, 1839.—See Rhees, Docu- 
ments, pp. 186-198. 

3Rhees, Documents, pp. 200, 201. 

4First session, House of Representatives Report No. 277. Smithson bequest. (To 
accompany amendatory bill H.R. No.1.) May 5,1840. Washington: Blair & Ross, 
printers. 8vo., p. 155. 


The Genesvs of the United States Nationat Museum. 97 


Mr. Adams seems to have been alone in his advocacy of the observatory 
and his bill and report produced no results. 

It was just at this time that the National Institution was organized on 
the 15th of May, 1840, by the adoption of a constitution and a declaration 
of its objects, ‘‘ which are to promote science and the useful arts, and to 
establish a national museum of natural history, etc.’’ 

The constitution of this society in its first form was somewhat meager, 
but as printed on the cover of the second bulletin of proceedings is 
decidedly prophetic of the future act of incorporation of the Smithsonian 
Institution. 

Its plan, however, was conceived in a broad and liberal spirit, its 
membership was a strong one, including at the beginning about ninety 
representative men of Washington, Members of Congress, scientific men, 
clergymen, and prominent citizens, and as many more corresponding 
members, among whom were all the leading men of the country. Among 
its principal officers were the Secretary of War, the Secretary of the Navy, 
ex-President Adams, the Chief of Engineers of the Army, and other 
prominent officials. The meetings were well attended, the membership 
was enthusiastic, gifts of books and specimens began to flow in, and the 
prospects of the society looked very bright. 

In his discourse * on the objects and importance of the National Insti- 
tution, delivered January 5, 1841, its president, Mr. Poinsett, referred 
pointedly to the Smithson bequest, saying that it offered a favorable 
occasion for carrying into effect all the important objects connected with 
a national institution, such as that just being organized in Washington, 
enabling the ‘‘Government to afford all necessary protection to the pro- 
motion of science and the useful arts* without the exercise of any 
doubtful power, etc.’’ 

Soon after this, in February, Senators Linn and Preston, both members 
of the National Institution, proposed new bills for the organization of the 
Smithsonian Institution, at the same time reporting a bill to incorparate 
the National Institution for the Promotion of Science. 

By these bills the entire management of the Smithsonian fund was to 
be intrusted to the National Institution. Its officers, a superintendent 
and six professors, were to be nominated by that society, which was also 
to prescribe their duties. Provision was made for joint occupancy by the 
two institutions of buildings to be erected at the cost of the Smithson 
bequest, and finally it was required— 

That all collections of works of art and of natural history, owned by the United 


States, not otherwise assigned (or all works of art, and all books relating thereto, 
and all collections and curiosities belonging to the United States, in the possession of 


* Discourse on the Objects and Importance of the National Institution for the Pro- 
motion of Science, established at Washington, 1840, delivered at the first anni- 
versary. Washington, 1841, p. 49. 

"2? The avowed objects of the National Institution, 


NAT MUS 97, PT 2 7 


98 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


any of the Executive Departments, and not necessarily connected with the duties 
thereof) shall be deposited in said buildings (or shall be transferred to said institu- 
tion, to be there preserved and arranged). 

In these bills, drawn up in 1840, may be found the germ of the National 
Museum idea, even to the extent of a proposition for an appropriation 
from the National Treasury, to be expended under the direction of the 
cfficers of the National Institution, the president and directors of which 
were the prototypes of the Smithsonian Chancellor and Regents for pur- 
poses connected with the administration of the collections such as it was 
not deemed proper to pay for out of the Smithsonian fund.* 

The object of the National Institution was the promotion of science 
and the useful arts, but the principal agency chosen for accomplishing 
this object was a national museum of natural history, etc. 

This was stated clearly in its declaration of objects at the time of its 
organization in 1840, as well as in its constitution. ° 

The sections relating to the Museum in the proposed act of incorpora- 
tion of the Institution of 1841 corresponded precisely to Articles XIV 
and XVI of the constitution of the society, except that the provision 
for the appointment of curators by the Institution is omitted. 

It was evidently the intention that the Board of Managers should 
control the national collections by virtue of the authority vested in them 
in their proposed control of the Smithsonian Institution. 

The act to incorporate the National Institution did not receive the 
approval of Congress until 1842, when new proposals for the organiza- 


‘And for the transportation and arrangement of the same, the sum of $5,000 is 
hereby appropriated out of the Treasury of the United States, to be expended under 
the direction of the president and directors of the National Institution. (Senate 
bill, No. 245, Twenty-sixth Congress, 1839-1841, section No. 4.) 


2 Constitution, May,1840, January, 1841: 

ARTICLE XIV. The resident and corre- 
sponding members shall exert themselves 
to procure specimens of natural history, 
etc., and the said specimens shall be 
placed in the Cabinet under the superin- 
tendence of a Board of Curators to be 
appointed by the Directors. All such 
specimens, etc., unless deposited sfe- 
cially, shall remain in the Cabinet, and in 
case of the dissolution of this Institution, 
shall become the property of the United 
States. 


Constitution, February, 1842: 

ARTICLE XIV. The Institution shall 
have power to appoint Curators and 
others for the preservation and arrange- 
ment of its collections. The resident 
and corresponding members shall exert 
themselves to procure specimens of nat- 
ural history, etc.; and the said specimens 
shall be placed in the Cabinet under the 
superintendence of a Curator or Curators. 
All such specimens, etc., unless deposited 
specially, shall remain in the Cabinet, 
and, in case of a dissolution of the Insti- 
tution, shall become the property of the 
United States. 

ARTICLE XVI. The various collections 
of the Institution shall be placed in the 
apartments which may be designated for 
that purpose by a majority of the Direct- 
ors. 


3Senator Preston, April 11, 1842, reintroduced his bill of the previous year. 


Report of U, S. National Museum, 1897. Part II PLATE 9, 


JOHN Gross BARNARD. 


The Genests of the United States National Museum. 99 


tion of the Smithsonian Institution were brought forward, very similar 
in many respects to those which had developed within the National 
Institution. 

The idea of a national museum to be administered in connection with 
the Smithsonian organization had been suggested by no one in the five 
years of discussion which preceded the organization of the National 
Institution. 

It is true that there had been plans proposed, especially those of 
Dunglison and Rush, which might have led up to the development of 
a museum, but the value of the museum as an educational agency and 
as an aid to research was not understood in those days. In its former 
aspect, it needed the teachings of the great exhibitions from 1851 to 1876, 
in the latter the vivifying influence of the Darwinian scientific renais- 
sance of 1859. 

The subject of the Smithsonian legacy and its proper disposition was 
henceforth one of those most frequently discussed by the founders of 
the National Institution, and for years it was the opinion of many 
influential men that this society should be made the custodian of the 
Smithson fund, and that the interests of the two establishments should 
be united. 

A suggestive indication of the sentiment of the officers of the Insti- 
tution is found in the letter of the committee of management to the 
Secretaries of War and the Navy in 1842, in which they remark that 
the object of the National Institution is ‘‘to increase and diffuse knowl- 
edge among men’’—making prominent the words of the Smithsonian 
bequest instead of the official definition of the objects of their own 
society, and deliberately indicating the fact of quotation, by the custom- 
ary symbols. 

The influence of this society was strongly and continuously present in 
Congress, for the six years which followed its organization, until the 
Smithsonian act was finally framed, and it seems very appropriate to try 
to ascertain whose was the master mind which not only prevailed in 
finally ingrafting the development of the National Museum upon the 
Smithsonian project, but which directly or indirectly led to the forma- 
tion of the various features of organization which have become such 
characteristic elements in the Smithsonian plan. 

The controlling mind was evidently that of Joel R. Poinsett, of South 
Carolina, who was Secretary of the Navy in 1840, and at whose house 
the society was organized, by eight persons, among whom were, of course, 
Mr. Poinsett, Colonel Abert, Mr. Markoe, and Colonel Totten. Mr. 
Poinsett was senior director, under the first plan of organization, and 
occupied the chair at every meeting until, under the amended constitu- 
tion, he was elected its first president in 1841. The amendment to the 
constitution was doubtless made in order to retain his official leadership, 
* for he became director ex officio while Secretary of the Navy. With the 


100 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


close of Van Buren’s Administration he became a private citizen, but the 
constitution was amended before his retirement from the Cabinet, and 
the position of presiding officer was never proffered to his successor. 

Although, from this time on, absent from the city, he was retained in 
the presidency and reelected in 1841, the vice-president of the society, 
Colonel Peter Force, continually presiding in his absence. 

Although the society elected its officers annually, Mr. Poinsett told 
Mr. Adams soon after his election that he should for two years come to 
Washington to preside over the National Institution for the Promotion 
of Science. He was in fact reelected to the presidency at every annual 
meeting until that of 1845, when, having declined candidacy, Senator 
Levi Woodbury was chosen president and Mr. Poinsett was unanimously 
elected an honorary member of the Institution. 

From this period the decline of the society’s prosperity was marked. 
It is more probable, however, that Mr. Poinsett’s lack of interest was a 
result of the weakness of the society than that the weakness resulted 
from his lack of interest. 

Perhaps, however, if Mr. Poinsett had been a resident of Washington 
rather than of South Carolina during the four years of his presidency, 
the result would have been different. 

That Mr. Poinsett, as early as 1838, was thinking seriously about the 
disposition of the Smithsonian bequest is evident from an entry in the 
diary of John Quincy Adams, under date of December 8.* Mr. Adams 
was evidently suspicious, and believed that Mr. Poinsett did not give him 
his entire confidence. In April, 1839, he talked to him again, and in 
1841 he wrote again in his diary: ‘‘ April 14. Mr. Poinsett called upon 
me and now fully disclosed his project, which is to place the investment 
and disposal of the Smithsonian funds under the management of the 
American Institution for the Promotion of Literature and Science.” 

He said he had at present no other occupation on hand, and ould 
be willing to devote two years entirely to organizing this establishment 
and getting it into full operation.’’ 

““T know not,’’ continued the aged statesman, ‘‘that it could be 
accomplished more effectively, and think I must acquiesce in this arrange- 
ment and endeavor to carry it through.’’ 

Since the bills of Messrs. Linn and Preston had been already for two 
months before the Senate, it seems strange that Mr. Adams should have 
looked upon Mr. Poinsett’s communication as a revelation—still more 
so when it is remembered how clearly he had expressed himself in his 
Discourse in January.? 


* Extracts from the Memoirs of John Quincy Adams, Rhees, Documents, p. 769. 

? Evidently meaning the National Institution. 

3Mr. Poinsett was not only the first to publicly suggest the union of the Smith- 
sonian with the National Institution, but was constant in his advocacy of the project. 
(See remarks, March 8, 1841, Proceedings of the National Institution, 2d Bull., p. 69, 


The Genesis of the United States Nationat Museum. IOL 


Poinsett, when elected to the presidency of the National Institution, 
was a man sixty-two years of age, who had lived an eventful life, full of 
opportunities for observing the institutions of Europe, Asia, and South 
America. His culture was broad and sympathetic, and he was, perhaps, 
better fitted than any of the public men of his time to appreciate the 
necessity of organizing our public institutions on the most liberal and 
comprehensive plan. 

In his interviews with those who advocated the establishment of an 
observatory as the first result of the Smithsonian legacy, he showed 
full appreciation of the value of such an institution, but seems to have 
kept before his own mind a much more comprehensive ideal. 

Poinsett was the first to suggest the idea of a great national museum 
at the capital of the nation. 

In his address upon he Objects and Importance of the National 
Institution for the Promotion of Science, delivered at the first anni- 
versary meeting of the society, January 4, 1841, he advocated boldly the 
formation of a national museum as one of the most important features 
of a central establishment at the seat of Government, such as is main- 
tained in every country in Europe for the advantage of those who culti- 
vated the arts and sciences. 

T’o one who reads this address it will become evident that it was 
Poinsett who put in words the definition of the objects of the National 
Institution—to promote science and the useful arts, and to establish a 
national museum of natural history. 

The following is an extract from this address: 


The lovers of science, literature, and the fine arts, residing in the District, fett 
sensibly the absence of those resources which are found elsewhere, and are necessary 
for the attainment of knowledge. They were mortified to perceive that the great 
advantages possessed by the public authorities at Washington were neglected, and 


and letter, February 7, 1842, Idem., p.157.) Doctor Peter S. Duponceau, president 
of the American Philosophical Society, in a letter to the Institution in November, 
1840, remarked: ‘‘Congress can not find a better opportunity to execute the will of 
that beneficent testator than by laying hold of your institution, and making it its 
own.’ (Idem., rst Bull., p. 12.) ‘The Hon. Virgil Maxcy, chargé d'affaires at Bel- 
gium, wrote in December, 1840, that in his opinion no better use could be made of 
the bequest than ‘‘to place it under the direction of a Society organized for the 
carrying into effect identical views with those contemplated by the philanthropical 
and philosophical testator.’’ (Idem., p. 46.) 

See in this connection letters from Richard Rush, on the Smithsonian bequest 
Proceedings of the National Institution (2d Bull., 1842, pp. 201-204) ; from Peter S. 
Duponceaun, on the Smithsonian bequest (Idem., 204-208) ; from Hon. Virgil Maxcy, 
chargé d’affaires of the United States to Belgium (ist Bulletin, pp. 46, AGE 
Opening Address by John Tyler, President of the United States, patron of the 
National Institute (3d Bulletin, pp. 437, 438); letter from the Hon. Levi Woodbury, 
United States Senate (Idem., pp. 451-453); Smithsonian bequest, by the Hon. 
Richard Rush (Idem., pp. 455-460); address of Hon, Mr. Preston, of the United 
States Senate (Idem., p. 236); letter of John Pickering, of Boston, September 1, 
1841 (2d Bull., pp. 107, 110). 


102 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


that, at the seat of Government of this great nation, there existed fewer means than 
in any other city of the Union of prosecuting those studies, which, while they 
impart dignity and enjoyment to existence, lead to the most useful practical results. 
They believed it to be their duty to arouse the attention of Government to these 
deficiencies, and, at all events, to address themselves to the task of supplying them, 
as far as could be done by their individual and combined exertions. For these pur- 
poses they have formed an association and applied themselves to collect specimens 
of geology and mineralogy, and other objects of natural history, and, for the short 
period of its existence, the efforts of the Institution have been eminently successful. 

They have entered into correspondence with other learned societies, and have been 
encouraged to proceed by their approbation, and profited by their generous coopera- 
tion. ‘They have invited the assistance of their fellow-citizens in the most distant 
States and Territories, and hope, by their aid, to collect documents and facts illus- 
trative of the early history of our country, specimens of its geology and of its min- 
eral and vegetable productions, and, if not to preserve the animals and plants 
themselves, which are passing away before the progress of settlement and cultiva- 
tion, at least to perpetuate their forms, and the memory of their existence. They 
hope to be able to illustrate these subjects and others connected with them by a 
series of gratuitous lectures, and entertain a confident expectation that numbers, 
whose duties compel them annually to assemble here, will view with interest collec- 
tions of the natural productions of America, drawn from every State and Territory 
in the Union, and, becoming sensible of their utility, will contribute on their return 
to swell their amount, and to spread throughout the country a taste for literary and 
scientific pursuits. 


In another place in the discourses of Mr. Poinsett, we find avowals of 
plans and ambitious aspirations for the future of the National Museum 
which would satisfy the most ambitious of its supporters of to-day. He 
spoke thus: 


Specimens of natural history are rapidly accumulating. The exploring expedition 
has already sent home a large collection, which remains packed away in boxes in a 
room belonging to the Philadelphia Museum, generously loaned by the company for 
that purpose; and we may anticipate from the ability and well-known zeal of the 
naturalists who accompanied it by order of Government that the squadron itself, 
shortly expected, will return richly freighted with objects of natural history. I can 
not believe that after all the labor, pains, and expense incurred in procuring them, 
these specimens are not to be brought to Washington, to be arranged and exhibited 
here. A geological survey of the Territory of Iowa was made a few months since, by 
order of the Government, and numerous valuable specimens collected by Mr. Owen. 
Mr. Nicolet has brought with him interesting collections made in the country he 
visited, and Doctor King, of Missouri, lately sent to the lead region on business con- 
nected with the ordnance office, while there collected specimens of minerals which 
are likewise destined for Washington. ‘The ordnance officers who have lately returned 
from Europe, have brought with them numerous specimens of the iron ores used in 
the foundries there, and measures have been taken to procure, as objects of compari- 
son, those of the United States. 

Several individuals have transmitted donations to the Institution, while others have 
deposited their collections with us, from a desire to have them preserved, and, at the 
saine time, to benefit science. We have reason to believe that this will be extensively 
done as soon as the Institution is firmly established. ‘There are many of our country- 
men who, like Sir Hans Sloane, the founder of the British Museum, look forward with 
regret to the sale and dispersion of their collections, made at great cost and pains, 
and desiring to have them preserved entire, would deposit them with an institution 
which will be as stable as the Government that protects it. 


Report of U. S. National Museum, 1897, Part Il. PLATE 10. 


BENJAMIN SMITH BARTON, 


» ay : 7 

' ae De 

Baty eee 
Lee 


The Genests of the United States National Museum. 103 


In every country in Europe, those who cultivate the arts and sciences enjoy the 
advantage of finding in each capital a central establishment, such as we propose. 

In London, the Royal Museum, which was commenced by the enlightened liber- 
ality of an individual, and subsequently enriched by similar bequests, and now 
liberally patronized by Government, possesses all that is necessary to protect and 
encourage literature, science, and the arts. 

The Society for the Promotion of Science and the Useful Arts in Dublin, having 
an extensive museum of natural history, a botanic garden, and school of design, 
fulfills effectually the objects of its institution, and justifies the very liberal patronage 
of the British Government. ‘There students in every branch of science find the means 
of improvement, and some of the most accomplished artists in England have been 
instructed in this school. 

In this country, we are best acquainted with the museum, botanical and zoological 
gardens, and liberal course of instruction at the Jardin des Plantes, in Paris, where 
strangers resort, from every quarter of the world, to consult the collections and listen 
to lectures, which are open to all who choose to attend them. ‘These courses of lec- 
tures are delivered by the ablest and most eloquent men in France, on every branch 
of science. In the summer botany is taught in a garden abounding in all the vege- 
table productions of the world; zoology in the midst of specimens of every known 
animal, and other branches of natural history, with the advantage of extensive 
collections, which are augmenting daily by an enlightened and active system of 
exchanges; chemistry and technology are illustrated by well-conducted experiments 
and admirably adapted apparatus, and every branch of natural philosophy taught 
with clearness and precision, and explained by the most ample means of illustration. 
These lectures are attended by students who have completed their academic course, 
and by men of science who seek to increase their knowledge. 

There can be no doubt that a national institution, such as we contemplate, having 
at its command an observatory, a museum containing collections of all the produc- 
tions of nature, a botanic and zoological garden, and the necessary apparatus for 
illustrating every branch of physical science, would attract together men of learning 
and students from every part of our country, would open new avenues of intelligence 
throughout the whole of its vast extent, and would contribute largely to disseminate 
among the people the truths of nature and the light of science. 

A fortunate concurrence of circumstances offers a favorable occasion to carry all these 
important objects into immediate effect. A liberaland enlightened Englishman, fore- 
seeing the benefits which would result to science throughout the world, by its success- 
ful cultivation in the vast and extensive field offered by these States and Territories, 
with enlarged views and praiseworthy philanthropy has bequeathed a fund to be 
employed for the sacred purposes of increasing and diffusing knowledge among 
men. This bequest will enable the Government to afford all necessary protection to 
the promotion of science and the useful arts, without the exercise of any doubtful 
power, by the application of the annual interest of this fund to the establishment of 
an observatory, the erection of suitable buildings to contain the collections, and for 
lecture rooms, the purchase of books and instruments, and the salaries of professors 
and curators. 


Poinsett’s enthusiasm was contagious, and his arguments, based as 
they evidently were upon careful observations and judicious reasoning, 
and inspired by hopeful patriotism, brought him many sympathizers. 
Among these the Hon. Levi Woodbury, who had been a member of the 
same Cabinet with Mr. Poinsett, and subsequently was in the Senate, 
Senator W. C. Preston, one of the directors of the Institution, Senator R. 
J. Walker, of Mississippi, Senator L. F. Linn, of Missouri, corresponding 


1o4 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


members, appear to have been especially friendly to the plans of Mr. Poin- 
sett, and on various occasions promoted the interests of the National 
Institution on the floor of the Senate from 1841 to 1846. 

In June, 1842, Mr. Poinsett was again in Washington, and on the 11th 
presided at a meeting at the home of Mr. Francis Markoe for the purpose 
of connecting the organizations of the National Institution with that of 
the Smithsonian Institution. 


Mr. Preston [wrote John Quincy Adams] has introduced into the Senate a bill for 
combining together these two institutions, and now stated to the meeting his views 
on the subject, embracing an appropriation of $20,000, and the occupation by law of 
a large portion of the Patent Offiee building for the preservation and arrangement 
of the objects of curiosity collected by the exploring expedition under Lieutenant 
Wilkes, now daily expected home; and he called on me to say how far my purposes 
may be concurrent with these suggestions. 

I said I had the warmest disposition to favor them, and thought there was but one 
difficulty in the way, which might perhaps be surmounted. I had believed that the 
whole burden and the whole honor of the Smithsonian Institution should be exclu- 
sively confined to itself, and not entangled or commingled with any national estab- 
lishment requiring appropriations of public money. I exposed the principles upon 
which all my movements relating to the Smithsonian bequest have been founded, as 
well as the bills which at four successive Congresses I have reported, first for 
obtaining the money, and then for disposing of the fund. 

At the motion of Mr. Walker, of Mississippi, the president, Poinsett, was author- 
ized to appoint a committee of five members of the Institute, to confer with Mr. 
Preston and me upon the means of connecting the Smithsonian Institution with 
the National Institute. 


Nothing seems to have resulted from these deliberations. 

On the 13th of June, at a stated meeting of the National Institution, 
Senator Preston was present, and delivered, as the records inform us, ‘‘an 
eloquent speech, in which he descanted at length on the history and labors 
of the Institute, what it had done, and what it proposed to do, its capac- 
ity to be eminently useful to the country and Congress, the advantage of 
uniting the Smithsonian Institution with it, etc., and appealed to Con- 
gress, and to the liberal citizens of the United States, to come forward in 
aid of a glorious cause, and in accomplishment of the great national 
objects which the Institute has in view.’’* 

Senator Preston’s bill for the union of the two institutions came to 
naught.’ 

During this session, however, the act to incorporate the National Insti- 
tute, as it was henceforth to be called, passed in a much modified form, 
and was approved July 27, 1842,3 and the society now seems to have felt 


*Proceedings of the National Institute, 3d Bull., 1845, p. 236. A copy was 
requested for publication (Idem., p. 241), but I can not learn that it was ever put 
in type. 

2 It was laid upon the table July 18, 1842, and never again taken up. 

3See Charter of Incorporation, Constitution, and By-Laws in Appendix to this 
report, and in Proceedings of the National Institute, 3d Bull., pp. 388-392. See also 
‘‘Bill to incorporate the National Institution,’’ etc., reported by Senator Preston 


The Genesis of the United States National Museum. 105 


‘much more secure in its project of retaining the control of the National 
Museum, and either of gaining eventually the management of the Smith- 
son fund or of obtaining an appropriation from Congress. 

Senator Woodbury," in commenting upon the form of the charter, 
remarked that— 


Care was taken originally to make the Institute different from all other chartered 
bodies, even in this District, so as to elevate it above every motive of personal gain, 
dedicating its labors exclusively to objects of a public character, and vesting all the 
property possessed for this purpose in the Government itself ; and thus, by rendering 
it zational in substance, as well as name, to obviate any constitutional objection 
which might arise against measures in its behalf. 


The change of the name from Institution to Institute seems to have 
been made in deference to a suggestion by Doctor Duponceau in a letter 
written April, 1842, in which he said: 


I have seen with great pleasure the bill brought into the Senate by the Hon. Mr. 
Preston. It fully coincides with the views that I have expressed. The object, in 
my opinion, is, to preserve the superiority of the National Institution over the Smith- 
sonian, and that of the Government over both. 

I would beg leave to suggest, whether it would not be advisable to make some 
small alteration in the name of the National Institution, so that it should not bear 
exactly the same name with the Smithsonian, but one expressive of some degree of 
superiority. I would recommend, for instance, that of Institute, which appears to 
me more dignified than that of institution, which is equally applicable to a school or 
college as to a great national establishment for the promotion of science. My idea 
would be to call the national establishment the ‘‘ National Institute for the Promo- 
tion of Science,’’ and the subordinate one the ‘‘Smithsonian Institution,’ without 
more. 


No appropriation came, however, and the charter and changed name 
failed to make the society more prosperous. 

At a meeting June 20,* 1842, a resolution was passed appointing a com- 
mittee to solicit private contributions of money and property. 

At another meeting, August 8, 1842, a report? was made by this com- 
mittee in which they proposed to institute an annual scientific conven- 
tion at Washington, during the session of Congress, and under the 


(S. No. 258), February 17, 1841, in Rhees, Documents, pp. 239-341. See also Memorial 
of the Officers of the National Institution for the Promotion of Science, January 21, 
1842 (House Doc. No. 59, Twenty-seventh Congress, second session, II), submitting 
draft of a bill of incorporation. 

*See remarks of Senator Woodbury in full, Proceedings of the National Institute, 
3d Bull., pp. 336, 337. 

* Evidently not June 13, though so stated in one portion of minutes. See Pro- 
ceedings of the National Institute, 3d Bull., pp. 236, 241, 335. 

3The committee appointed to devise and execute such measures as should be 
deemed expedient to obtain contributions and other aid to the Institute would make 
an informal report. 

They propose making an appeal to the public, by disseminating an account of the 
Institute, its past efforts, its condition, and its prospects, and an exhibition of the 

- many reasons why it should be sustained and encouraged by the citizens of the 

United States. In their judgment the best means of doing this will be the publica- 


106 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


auspices of the Institution, and also recommended an extensive system 
of exchange of specimens for the benefit of the museum. 

At the meeting of September 12, 1842, Mr. Poinsett, the president, 
proposed a series of resolutions * intended to put the recommendation of 
the report into effect. 

All of these resolutions and reports were issued in the form of circulars 
(October 15, 1842, and February 24, 1843), but the appeals ‘‘to the lib- 
erality and public spirit cf our countrymen’’ were without avail. 

Consequently a special meeting of the board of management was held 
December 23, 1843, at the office of the Secretary of State. That the 
society was regarded at that time as one of national importance is shown 
by the presence at the meeting of Mr. Upshur, the Secretary of State, 
who took an active part in the proceedings; the Hon. John Quincy 
Adams, who presided; Senator Levi Woodbury, late Secretary of the 
Treasury, who agreed to represent the meeting in Congress; the Hon. 
J. R. Ingersoll, who acted as secretary, and who wrote out in his pream- 
ble to the minutes of the meeting a forcible statement of the needs of the 
society; the Hon. C. J. Ingersoll, Senator R. J. Walker, besides Colonel 
Peter Force, Colonel Abert, Colonel Totten, Lieutenant Maury, and the 
officers of the society. 

The issue of this meeting was the decision ‘‘to memorialize Congress 
on the subject of the condition and wants of the Institute.’’ 


tion of the remarks addressed to the Institute by the Hon. Mr. Preston, Senator from 
South Carolina, on the evening of the 13th of June last. 

They also propose to address circulars to prominent individuals in the different 
States, inviting their cooperation, particularly in receiving and transmitting con- 
tributions. 

They recommend that the Institute authorize the president and secretaries to 
sanction their circulars by their official signatures. 

They propose that a meeting of the learned men of our country, distinguished for 
their attainments in the different sciences, particularly in those termed physical, 
should be held annually at the seat of the General Government, at some early period 
of the session of Congress, under the auspices of the Institute, to communicate the 
results of their inquiries, to compare their observations, and to promote the general 
interests of science. It has seemed to the committee that this Institute affords an 
opportunity, which ought not to be neglected, of concentrating the genius and 
learning of our country at a common center, from which the beams of intelligence 
will radiate to gladden and bless the land. 

They recommend that, in addition to the powers already conferred, the comunittee 
be authorized to make arrangements for such a meeting, at a day as early as may be 
found practicable, and to invite the attendance of those who may desire to partici- 
pate in its proceedings. 

They think that a system of exchanges of mineral and geological specimens, and 
perhaps of other articles, with the private and public collections in different parts of 
the Union, may be established with reciprocal advantage; and that the museum of 
this Institute may, by these and other means, be enabled in time to exhibit the 
various treasures of our different soils; and they would suggest the appointment of 
a committee to whom this subject should be given specially in charge. (Proceed- 
ings of the National Institute, 3d Bull., p. 335.) 

*Proceedings of the National Institute, 3d Bull., p. 336. 


Report of U. S, National Museum, 1897. Part Il. PLATE 11. 


The Genesis of the United States National Museum. 107 


The memorial was presented in due course of time, and in June, 1844, 
Senator Choate presented a report upon the character and uses of the 
Institute, recommending that its property should be vested in the United 
States and an appropriation made for its benefit. 

I have not been able to find a copy of this memorial, but since it was 
evidently prepared by Mr. J. R. Ingersoll’ it is safe to assume that the 
grounds for asking aid were essentially those named in his ‘‘ preamble’? 
read to the society December 28, 1843.” 

In the meantime, on the occasion of the first annual meeting of the 
National Institute (under its new name and in its capacity as a corpora- 
tion), in April, 1844, the meeting of the friends of science, including, 
besides all the members and patrons of the National Institute, the mem- 
bers of the American Philosophical Society and of the Association of 
American Geologists and Naturalists (the predecessor of the American 
Association for the Advancement of Science), had been held in Wash- 
ington. ‘The occasion was a brilliantly successful one. ‘The President 
of the United States presided at the first meeting and some prominent 
public men at each of the others. 

The National Institute received its full share of encomium. President 
Tyler lauded it highly, held out the hope that the Government would 
‘‘continue to it a fostering care,’’ and expressed in a general way the 
hope that it should be identified with the future National Museum and 
the future Smithsonian Institution. 

‘‘Where can the Government find,’’ said he, ‘‘a safer depository for 
the fruits of its expeditions, fitted out to explore distant and unknown 
regions, than the National Institute? What can it better do for the 
‘increase and diffusion of knowledge among men’ than by patronizing 
and sustaining this magnificent undertaking?’’ 

Senator Walker, of Mississippi, one of the directors of the Institute, 
delivered a very appreciative introductory address on the present con- 
dition and history of American science, ending with an appeal to scien- 
tific men to come forward and unite withthe people in sustaining and 
advancing the National Institute. 

Senator Woodbury, in a letter to the secretary of the Institution, 
expressed himself strongly in favor of making the society the agent of 
the Government in the matter of caring for collections, patents, and 
copyrights, and also in the execution of the Smithson trust. 

John Quincy Adams closed his address in these words: 

I avail myself of this occasion to express my regret that, having taken an humble 


‘ part in the establishment of this Institution from its first foundation, under the 
auspices of Mr. Poinsett, I have been able to contribute so little to its promotion 


"At the meeting of May, 1844, the Hon. Joseph R. Ingersoll offered remarks upon 
the pecuniary embarrassments of the Institute, and expressed a hope that Congress 
would furnish the required aid. (Proceedings of the National Institute, 3d Bull., 
” p. 359-) 

?Proceedings of the National Institute, 3d Bull., p. 332. 


108 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


and advantage, and to add my heartfelt satisfaction at the prosperity which, by the 
untiring exertions and fervid zeal of its executive officers, it has attained. I believe 
it eminently deserving of the fostering care and liberal patronage of the Congress of 
the United States, and could anticipate no happier close to my public life than to 
contribute, by my voice and by my vote, to record the sanction of the nation’s 
munificence to sustain the National Institute devoted to the cause of science. 

The Hon. Richard Rush, in a paper on The Smithsonian Bequest, 
submitted to this meeting, urged that the Smithsonian fund should be 
‘‘engrafted upon the National Institute,’’ and submitted an elaborate 
argument in favor of his proposal. 

It was a gala week for the National Institution. The meeting was in 
every respect a success, and there was every reason to believe that Con- 
gress would share in the general enthusiasm and take the society under 
its patronage. 

In the circular of invitation dated March 5, 1844, the objects of the 
meeting as a means of strengthening the position of the society had been 
boldly stated, and the committee did not hesitate to say that ‘‘ should 
the meeting prove as successful as the hopes of the managers in relation 
to it are ardent, they will expect, hereafter to welcome all who may visit 
the Association, in apartments peculiar to itself, stored with the objects 
of its honest pride and worthy of the distinguished visitors.”’ 

Such a paper signed by such influential names as those of John C. 
Spencer, Secretary of the Treasury, R. J. Walker, W. C. Rives, Rufus 
Choate, of the Senate, J. R. Ingersoll and W. C. Preston, of the House of 
Representatives, A. D. Bache, Superintendent of the Coast Survey, and 
Abbot Lawrence, of Boston, was surely a powerful campaign document. 

None the less weighty was the ‘‘ Memorial of the Friends of Science 
who attended the April meeting of the National Institute,’’ signed by 
nearly forty representative scientific men and college presidents from all 
parts of the United States, speaking in terms of high commendation of 
the National Institute, and particularly of the extent and value of its 
museum material, and expressing the hope ‘‘that the enlightened and 
intelligent members of Congress will distinguish the present session by 
the necessary appropriation of funds to an object so truly national and 
so truly republican.’’ 

This indorsement of the museum work of the Institute is very cordial 
and comprehensive, and very significant; is indicative of a decided growth 
in public opinion in regard to museums—a growth largely due in the first 
instance to the suggestions and later to the fostering care of Mr. Poinsett 
and his society, the National Institute. 

The hopes of the promoters of the Institute were doomed to disappoint- 
ment. Congress adjourned without making any provision for its needs. 

On the 12th of July a new scheme was proposed for collecting money 
from private sources by the efforts of trustworthy agents, and in December 
a committee was appointed to again memorialize Congress. * 


« Proceedings of the National Institute, 3d Bull., p. 375. 


The Genests of the United States National Museum. 109 


The movement had received its deathblow, however. |The failure of 
the tremendous effort of April, 1844, disheartened all its friends. At the 
next annual meeting Mr. Poinsett declined reelection to the presidency. 
The society’s publications were discontinued, and even the annual address 
of Senator Woodbury, solicited for publication by the society, seems to 
have remained in manuscript unprinted. 

No more meetings were held, no more bulletins printed, the magnifi- 
cent list of 350 resident and 1,250 corresponding members began to grow 
shorter. An effort was made to revive it in 1847, and a meager report 
was made once afterward by the corresponding secretary. In 1855 it was 
brought into existence for a time as a local scientific society, and issued 
a new series of proceedings.‘ Its glory departed, however, with the first 
annual meeting in 1844, and the attention of Congress was directed toward 
the organization of the Smithsonian Institution. 

The influence of the National Institute upon the history of science in 
the United States, and particularly in educating public opinion and the 
judgment of Congress toan application of the proper means of disposing 
of the Smithsonian legacy, can not well be overestimated. 

If the Smithsonian had been organized before the National Institute 
had exerted its influences, it would have been a school, an observatory, 
or an agricultural experiment station. 

In 1846, however, the country was prepared to expect it to be a general 
agency for the advancement of scientific interests of all kinds—as catho- 
lic, as unselfish, as universal as the National Institute. 

The National Institute, after nearly five years of activity, suddenly 
ceased to be a center of public interest. The struggle over the Smith- 
sonian bequest, however, still continued. During the Twenty-seventh 
Congress, 1841-1843, the Senate did nothing. ‘The House of Represent- 
atives appointed a select committee on the subject, and Mr. Adams as 
its chairman reported a new bill, providing still more thoroughly for 
the erection of an observatory and the publication of a nautical almanac 
to be called the Smithsonian Almanac. Petitions continued to come 
in, some urging action and asking for the establishment of prizes for 
scientific essays, another for the establishment of an agricultural school 
and farm in the District of Columbia. The National Institute had 
perhaps fallen somewhat into disfavor with Congress—or, it may be, had 
become so prominent as to awaken feelings of opposition. 

The Twenty-eighth Congress (1843-1845) brought their deliberations 
more nearly to an issue. 

The astronomical observatory bill (H. R. 418, Twenty-eighth Congress ) 
was again presented by Mr. Adams, but not acted upon. In the Senate, 
both in the first and second sessions, a bill for the Smithsonian Institu- 


Professor Henry was for a time an officer [vice president], and endeavored to have 
-its name changed to Metropolitan Institute. 


110 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


tion was reported, June 6, 1844, by the Committee on the Library, through 
Senator Tappan, which, before it was finally brought toa vote, was brought 
into a form somewhat resembling that which finally was adopted. It pro- 
vided, however, for the appointment of various professors and lecturers 
for a school of agricultural and mechanical arts, as well as for experimental 
gardens, a library of science and economics, and a museum. 

The museum clause of this bill was much the same as that finally agreed 
to, and contained a provision that the natural-history objects and geolog- 
ical and mineralogical specimens belonging to the United States, ‘‘in 
whosesoever custody the same may be,’’ should be transferred to the 
custody of the board of managers of the Smithsonian Institution. 

This was evidently worded with the purpose of withdrawing from the 
possession of the National Institution the various collections, including 
those which had belonged to Smithson, which had fallen into the hands 
of that society between 1840 and 1845. Indeed, the National Institution 
seems to have already become the object of some distrust and prejudice. 
A proposition that two of the seven ‘‘managers’’ not ex-officio members 
of the board should be selected from the membership of the National Insti- 
tution caused a vigorous debate in the Senate, in the course of which at 
least two Senators objected strongly to placing the administration of the 
Smithsonian Institution, even to so slight a degree as this, in the hands 
of a private corporation. 

The act finally passed the Senate, but was not acted on by the House. 

In connection with Mr. Tappan’s bill, in January, 1845, Senator Choate, 
of Massachusetts, first appeared in advocacy of the establishment of a 
great library, and delivered his famous oration upon the influence of 
books. ‘The amendment at that time proposed, together with the amend- 
ments urged by Mr. George P. Marsh, inconnection with the Owen-Hough 
bill, brought forward in the following session, had a great influence upon 
the final adjustment of the plan of administration." 

To the Twenty-ninth Congress (1845-1847) belongs the honor of finally 
formulating the act of incorporation by which the Smithsonian Institution 
was established. 

This was done through Robert Dale Owen, of Indiana, who reported 
the bill nearly in its final form. John Quincy Adams was a member of. 
the select committee to whom it was referred, together with Mr. Owen, 
chairman, Mr. Jenkins, Mr. George P. Marsh, Mr. Alexander D. Sims, 
Mr. Jefferson Davis, and Mr. Wilmot. . 

Mr. Adams was now for the first time willing to omit his advocacy of 
a Smithsonian Astronomical Observatory, the Naval Observatory having 
now been organized, and being, as Mr. Owen remarked, ‘‘at least equal 
in everything but the experience of its observers to the Royal Observa- 
tory at Greenwich.”’ 

It is not my purpose to describe the growth of the Smithsonian plan 


*See report of Hon. James Meacham, 1854, pp. 10-12. 


Report of U. S, National Museum, 1897. Part Il. PLATE 12. 


The Genests of the United States National Museum. — 111 


of organization, except in its bearings upon the development of the 
museum idea. 

In the bill proposed by Robert Dale Owen in 1846 the National Insti- 
tute was recognized to the extent of placing two of its members on the 
Board of Managers, an arrangement which was continued in the Board of 
Regents in the Hough bill which finally passed. 

An amendment to the Owen bill, proposed by Joseph R. Ingersoll, 
and passed, and which, had it not been superseded in the Hough bill, 
would have given the National Institute a strong and perhaps permanent 
hold upon the national collections, read as follows : 


Src. 5. And be it further enacted, That, in proportion as suitable arrangements 
can be made for their reception, all objects of art and of foreign and curious research, 
and all objects of natural history, plants, and geological and mineralogical specimens 
belonging or hereafter to belong to the United States, which may be in the city of 
Washington, in whosesoever custody the same may be, shall be delivered to such 
persons as may be authorized by the Board of Managers to receive them, and shall 
be arranged in such order, and so classed, as best to facilitate the examination and 
study of them, in the buildings so as aforesaid to be erected for the institution; and 
the managers of said institution shall afterwards, as new specimens in natural history, 
geology, or mineralogy may be obtained for the museum of the institution, by 
exchanges of duplicate specimens belonging to the institution (which they are 
hereby authorized to make), or by donation, which they may receive, or otherwise, 
cause such new specimens to be also appropriately classed and arranged. And the 
minerals, books, manuscripts, and other property of James Smithson, which have 
been received by the Government of the United States, and are now placed in the 
Department of State, shall be removed to said institution, and shall be preserved 
separate and apart from the other property of the institution. 

Sec. 6. And be it further enacted, That the managers of said institution shall 
appoint a Superintendent, whose duty it shall be to take charge of the ground, 
buildings, and property belonging to the institution, and carefully preserve the same 
from injury; and such Superintendent shall be the Secretary of the Board of Man- 
agers, and shall, under their direction, make a fair and accurate record of all their 
proceedings, to be preserved in said institution; and the said Superintendent shall 
also discharge the duties of librarian and of keeper of the museum, and may, with 
the consent of the Board of Managers, employ assistants; and the said managers 
shall appoint a professor of agriculture, horticulture, and rural economy; and the 
said professor may hire, from time to time, so many gardeners, practical agriculturists, 
and laborers as may be necessary to cultivate the ground and maintain a botanical 
garden; and he shall make, under the supervision of the board of management, such 
experiments as may be of general utility throughout the United States, to determine 
the utility and advantage of new modes and instruments of culture, to determine 
whether new fruits, plants, and vegetables may be cultivated to advantage in the 
United States; and the said officers shall receive for their services such sum as may 
be allowed by the Board of Managers, to be paid semiannually on the first day of 
January and July; and the said officers, and all other officers of the institution, shall 
be removable by the Board of Managers, whenever, in their judgment, the interests 
of the institution require any of the said officers to be changed. 


In the Hough bill there was an attempt of another kind to weld 
together the fate of the Smithsonian Museum and the National Cabinet 
of Curiosities, by giving to the Board of Regents the authority to erect 
a building by the side of the Patent Office, so as to form a wing of that 


a Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


structure, and to connect it with the hall then containing the National 
Cabinet, so as to constitute that hall in whole or in part the depository 
of the cabinet of the institution. 

This was discretionary, however, with the Regents, who fortunately 
did not look upon the plan with favor. 

Reference has been made to the marked similarity between the plans 
of organization of the National and Smithsonian institutions. In addi- 
tion to the feature of museum custody, which has already been discussed, 
there were others no less significant. 

The National Institution, like the Smithsonian Institution, had a 
superior board of officers, composed of the President of the United States 
and the members of his Cabinet. It had alsoa board of directors, which 
included in its membership delegates from the Senate and House of Rep- 
resentatives, corresponding in function to the Smithsonian Board of 
Regents. In other respects, still more markedly than in the constitution 
of its governing board, the Smithsonian seems to have been organized 
with the plan of the National Institution in view. The objects, as defined 
in the Congressional act of establishment (sections 5 and 6), correspond 
very closely to those announced in the early publications of the National 
Institution. 

The Institution at its foundation divided its members into eight classes, 
as follows: 

I. Astronomy, Geography, and Natural Philosophy; 
II. Natural History; 
III. Geology and Mineralogy; 
IV. Chemistry; 
V. The Application of Science to the Useful Arts; 
VI. Agriculture; 
VII. American History and Antiquities; 

VIII. Literature and Fine Arts; 
and in all these classes, except the fourth, made plans for the collection 
of museum material. Ethnography was grouped by Mr. Poinsett with 
geography, with which he states that it is ‘‘intimately connected, and 
indeed forming a part of it until it was lately erected into a separate 
science.”’ 

It is worthy of remark that the term ‘‘manager,’’* to designate a 
member of the governing board, was employed in every bill, except in 


»The term regent was undoubtedly suggested by the organization of the University 
of the State of New York, a term peculiar to Mr. Hough, the mover of the substi- 
tute, who was a Representative from that State and who in all probability had been 
one of the board of regents of that university. 

The Hon. W. J. Hough was the first Secretary of the Institution. Having been 
elected to that office September 7, 1846, he served until the election of Professor 
Henry, on December 3. Mr. B. B. French was elected assistant secretary, and 
appears to have served until the election of C. C. Jewett, and at a meeting of the 
board in December submitted a report for the Secretary. 


The Genests of the United States National Museum. £13 


the substitute which was proposed only a few hours before the final 
action, and that when the election of the first Secretary was held, Francis 
Markoe, jr., who had been for six years Secretary of the National Insti- 
tution and was more than anyone else perhaps identified with its inter- 
ests, received four votes against seven cast for Professor Henry. Doctor 
Charles Pickering, the Curator of the National Institution, also received 
one vote. 

The term ‘‘curator,’’ as applied to an officer in charge of the national 
collections, then came into use for the first time. 


THE NATIONAL CABINET OF CURIOSITIES. 


The formation of a ‘‘national museum’’ was one of the professed 
objects of Poinsett and his associates in the National Institution, but it 
does not appear that they ever dignified with that name their collections, 
which were usually modestly referred to as constituting the ‘‘ cabinet’’* 
of the Institution, both in the constitution and in the proceedings of the 
society. 

In the Hough bill for the organization of the Smithsonian Institution 
in 1846, the collection in the Patent Office was officially designated as the 
National Cabinet of Curiosities, a name which, though never in general 
use, is very appropriate and convenient for use in designating t'i¢ assem- 
blage of miscellaneous objects for a time exhibited in the Patent Office 
building. 

From 1847 to 1851, however, there was no use of the term National 
Museum, the collections of natural history which were accumulating 
under the care of Professor Baird constituting for the time being the 
‘Museum of the Smithsonian Institution.’’ 

The National Cabinet of Curiosities, carrying with it a certain official 
atmosphere, as well as an annual appropriation, was, however, one of the 
parents of the greater establishment yet to come. Of its marriage with 
the Smithsonian Museum, the National Museum of the United States was 
the offspring. 

The Smithsonian cabinet of minerals and meteorites was, as we have 
seen, the first scientific collection which belonged to the United States, 
coming into the custody of Mr. Rush in June, 1838. 


tIn 1790 a law was passed by Congress ‘‘to promote the progress of science and 
the useful arts by securing for limited times to authors and inventors the exclusive 
right to their respective writings and discoveries.’’ [Sec. VII, par. VIII. ] 

In this was gathered a collection of models, which was sometimes by courtesy 
called ‘‘ The American Museum of Arts,’’? but which had no title to the name either 
by law or by courtesy. This was destroyed by fire December 15, 1836. 

In ‘‘An act to promote the progress of the useful arts, etc.,’’ approved July 4, 1836, 
provision was made for the preservation and display, under the charge of the Com- 
missioner of Patents, not only of models, but of ‘‘specimens of compositions and of 

‘fabrics and other manufactures and works of art.’? [Sec.xx.] 


NAT MUS 97, PT 2 8 


114 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


Of all the expeditions sent out by the Government, none previous to 
the Wilkes exploring expedition, sent out in 1838, was instructed to 
bring back collections of natural history. 

In the earliest days of our Republic the cabinet of the American Philo- 
sophical Society of Philadelphia was doubtless the official museum, and 
this was enriched by the efforts of the only naturalist President, Thomas 
Jefferson. 

The first exploring expedition, that of Lewis and Clarke in 1803, was 
sent out by Jefferson, who twenty-three years before, in 1780, began to 
agitate the question of exploring the unknown West, and who at that 
time offered to raise 1,000 guineas for the purpose from private sources. 
Lewis and Clarke returned in 1806, bringing with them some valuable 
scientific material, zoological and ethnological. Some of the animals 
appear to have found their way to Peale’s Philadelphia Museum. God- 
man in his American Natural History mentions a sable which had been 
obtained from this source and was to be seen there in 1823. I have 
been told that within a few years Indian garments and weapons brought 
back by this party were to be seen in St. Louis. Pike’s expedition, in 
1805, the second of the exploring enterprises, yielded little in the way of 
scientific material. Whatever there was went undoubtedly to the Phila- 
delphia Museum, and in 1808 there were still on exhibition at that place 
two grizzly bears, which as cubs had been brought by Major Pike from 
the region of the Rio del Norte and presented by him to President Jeffer- 
son, who gave them to Mr. Peale for his museum. Other specimens 
appear to have found shelter in the University of Virginia, where two 
sets of antlers brought back by Captain Lewis are still preserved. 

In 1820 a third expedition was sent by the General Government to 
explore the Northwestern Territory, especially the region around the 
Great Lakes and the sources of the Mississippi. This was under charge 
of General Lewis Cass, at that time governor of Michigan Territory. 
Henry R. Schoolcraft accompanied this expedition as mineralogist, and 
Captain D. B. Douglass, United States Army, as topographical engineer, 
and both of these sent home considerable collections reported upon by 
the specialists of the day, most of whom were at that time concentrated 
in Philadelphia. en: 

The fourth and fifth expeditions were those under Major Long, in the 
far West; the first, or Rocky Mountain, exploration in 1819-20; the 
second, to the sources of the St. Peter’s in 1823. In the first expedition 
Major Long was accompanied by Edwin James as botanist and geologist, 
who also wrote the narrative published in 1823. The second expedition 
was accompanied by William H. Keating, professor of mineralogy and 
chemistry in the University of Pennsylvania, who was its geologist and 
historiographer. Say was the zoologist of both explorations, and the 
results of his labors went to the Philadelphia Museum. 


Report of U. S. National Museum, 1897. Part II. PLA. 


The Genests of the United States National Museum. crs 


The sixth Government expedition was that by G. W. Featherston- 
haugh, in 1834-35, to explore the geology of the elevated country 
beween the Missouri and Red rivers and the Wisconsin Territories. I 
have found no record of the disposition of his collections, but it is not 
improbable that he may have carried them with him to England. 

The seventh expedition was that under Lieutenant Wilkes, already 
referred to as having been sent out in 1838, under the direction of Presi- 
dent Van Buren, who seems to have intrusted the plans very largely to 
Mr. Poinsett, who was the first to urge the formation of a national 
museum, and to whom was doubtless due the insertion of the clause 
instructing the officers to preserve and bring back collections in natural 
history, a precaution which might easily have been overlooked, since the 
expedition was organized professedly in the interests of the American 
whale fishery. 

It was, perhaps, the fact that there was no suitable depository for 
collections at the seat of Government that stimulated Mr. Poinsett to 
immediate action in 1840, when he founded the National Institution, the 
arrival of these collections from the Pacific being at that time expected. 

The purpose of Mr. Poinsett’s efforts is shown clearly in his first anni- 
versary address: 

There are many of our countrymen [says he] who, like Sir Hans Sloane, the 
founder of the British Museum, look forward with regret to the sale and dispersion 
of their collections, and desiring to have them preserved entire, would deposit them 
with an institution which will be as stable as the Government that protects it. For 
these purposes, and especially if it [the National Institution] be intrusted, as we 
hope it will be, with the specimens of natural history collected by the exploring 
squadron, it will be necessary that measures should be early adopted to have erected 
on a suitable site a plain, fireproof building, where the increasing and valuable collec- 
tions may be displayed, and be examined by the scientific inquirer. We cherish the 
hope that they will form the foundation of a National Museum, and contribute to 
spread the light of science over our land. 

The exploring expedition [he continued] has already sent home a large collec- 
tion, which remains packed away in boxes in a room belonging to the Philadelphia 
Museum, generously loaned by the company for that purpose; and we may antici- 
pate from the ability and well-known zeal of the naturalists who accompanied it, 
that the squadron itself, shortly expected, will return richly freighted with objects 
of natural history. I can not believe that, after all the labor, pains, and expense 


incurred in procuring them, these specimens are not to be brought to Washington 
to be arranged and exhibited here.’’* 


Mr. Poinsett was at this time still Secretary of War, and had the 
power to effect at least the beginning of what he desired to see done, 
and one of his last official acts was to persuade his colleague, James K. 
Paulding, the Secretary of the Navy, to order these collections forwarded 
from Philadelphia. 

In February the Institution was informed ‘‘that about one hundred 
and fifty boxes, the results, as far as have been received, of the Explor- 


* Discourse on the Objects and Importance of the National Institution, 1841, p. 50. 


116 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


ing Squadron’s exertions, containing a variety of interesting objects of 
Natural History, and destined for the cabinet of the Institution, have 
been shipped at Philadelphia, and are expected as soon as the navigation 
opens.’’” 

Here, again, Mr. Poinsett’s prompt action told in the interest of the 
future national museum. If he had waited till the navigation opened 
he would have been obliged to treat with the Secretary of the Navy. 

The entirely unorganized condition of affairs in Washington and the 
lack of experience in museum administration is shown by the fact that 
Mr. W. McGuigan, curator of the Philadelphia Museum Company, thought 
it necessary to write the following amusing cautionary letter, which was 
printed in the bulletin of the Institution: 

It would be unadvisable to break open the cases containing the articles collected 
by the South Sea Exploring Expedition, until such period as they are intended to be 
prepared for exhibition. The immense quantity of arsenic, and corrosive sublimate 
necessary for their preservation requires imperatively that very great caution should 
be observed, and that the handling and arrangements should be under either the 
immediate inspection or personal attention of one fully adequate to all the details 
connected with this subject. 

In the hands of inexperienced persons death might be the result. 


W. McGUIGAN. 
PHILADELPHIA, february 6, 1841. 


Still another step was taken on March 3, 1841, the day before the final 
adjournment, which I am also disposed to attribute to the forethought 
and interest of Mr. Poinsett, which was the appropriation by Congress 
of $5,000 ‘‘for defraying the expenses of transporting to the city of 
Washington and of arranging the collections made by the exploring 
expedition.’’ 

The committee, consisting of Colonel Abert, Mr. Markoe, Mr. Dayton, 
and Doctor King, appointed under a resolution passed at the stated meet- 
ing of the National Institution on the 13th December, 1841, which is 
in the following words: 


Resolved, That a committee of four members be appointed by the Chair to 
examine the subject of Exchanges, to propose a plan for that purpose, and to report 
fully thereon to the Institution for its further consideration and action, beg leave, in 
pursuance of the directions of the said resolution, to report— 

That the duty devolved on the committee by the resolution, is, First, to examine the 
subject of exchanges; second, to propose a plan of exchanges; and, third, to report 
thereon to the Institution. In reference to the first point, viz: ‘‘the examination of 
the subject,’’ the committee state that they have examined the subject, and that the 
result has been a full conviction of mind that a system of exchanges is of very great 
importance in the accomplishment of one of the primary objects for which the 
National Institution has been declared to be formed, viz: ‘‘the establishment of a 
national museum of natural history,’’ etc. Exchanges enter essentially into the 
plan of every society constituted as the National Institution, and having like objects 
in view; and no occasion has been omitted to acquaint societies and individuals, 
whose correspondence has been sought by or offered to the National Institution, that 


* Proceedings of the National Institution, 1st Bull., p. 48. 


The Genests of the United States National Museum. 1 A 


a system of general exchanges would be entered upon as soon as the Institution 
should be able to mature a plan for that purpose. Under this assurance, and inde- 
pendently of it also, it should be added, valuable collections of various kinds have 
already been received by the Institution, which is thus already placed in a position 
which makes it incumbent on us to redeem the pledge that has been given. The 
committee consider it superfluous to dwell upon the advantages of exchanges; but 
they wish the members to know that for this object they have already in hands the 
most abundant materials—materials which are increasing and will continue to 
increase every day. ‘These materials consist of contributions made by members, by 
individuals who are not members, by societies and institutions at home and abroad, 
and by foreign governments, as well as of those accessions that have been made by 
the Exploring Expedition, which has already sent home an inexhaustible quantity 
and variety of duplicates. It is well known to the Institution that the collections 
received from all these sources are equally and absolutely the property of the Gov- 
ernment, and that therefore the permission of the Government is indispensable to 
enable the Institution to part with the duplicates derived from all these sources. 
This permission, it is believed, will be cheerfully accorded. At the same time the 
committee, for obvious reasons, do not think it proper to ask the Government to 
allow the Institution to part with any of the duplicates of the Exploring Expedition, 
until the squadron, shall have returned. 

In reference to the second point, viz; a plan of exchanges, the committee do not 
feel called upon or competent to enter into details. These must be left in a good 
degree to those whom the Institution may see fit to charge with the execution of the 
plan, in which of course they will be governed by the practice of other institutions, 
and by such regulations as it may become expedient to adopt from time to time to 
suit our own convenience and peculiar circumstances. Here, however, on the 
threshold of the plan which the committee mean to propose, they regard it of con- 
sequence to suggest for the sanction of the Institution, that in exchanges of all kinds, 
the natural productions of our country shall first and always have a decided prefer- 
ence. A great and leading design of the National Institution is to explore and 
develop our own resources, and to study and describe the natural history of the 
United States. To this end our exertions must principally be directed. It should 
be the pride of all connected with or interested in a ational Institution to see every 
State in the Union fully represented in a National Cabinet, established at the seat of 
Government. This method, while it recommends itself to us and our interests, is 
calculated to extend benefits and encouragement to the societies and naturalists of 
our own country, who will thus have a central depository, from which they may 
enlarge and vary their own collections; and thus, also, in due time, the duplicates 
of the Exploring Expedition may, with the greatest advantage, be diffused through- 
out the land, thereby fulfilling, in the amplest manner, the intentions of those who 
projected, and justifying the liberality of the Government which sanctioned that 
noble project. 

With these preliminary remarks, and under the restrictions which are embraced in 
them, the committee recommend— 

First. That a system of exchanges be entered upon without delay. 

Second. That the Curator and assistants be directed, for this purpose, to separate 
all duplicates, except those from the Exploring Expedition; and that they select and 
label such specimens as are to be sent to individuals or societies. 

Third. That the first step taken be to discharge the obligations of exchange 
already incurred by the Institution. 

Fourth. That a committee be appointed, to whom the Curator shall submit all sets 
of specimens thus set aside for any given exchanges, who shall decide upon the 
- equivalency, before said specimens shall be boxed up and sent off. 


118 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


Fifth. That in all cases of difficulty which may arise, reference must be made to the 
President or Vice-President of the Institution for decision, who will, if they conceive 
it necessary, submit the question to the Institution. 

Sixth. That a book be kept by the Curator, subject at all times to the inspection of 
the committee, in which must be noted the contents of each box or package; lists of 
the articles for which they are the equivalents; the name and place of the society or 
individual to whom one set is to be sent, and from whom the other has been received. 

In what the committee have now submitted, they conceive that they have done all 
that it was possible or necessary to do at present, in reference to the third point of the 
resolution, viz: ‘‘reporting fully on the subject ;’’ although they are perfectly sensi- 
ble that in their report they have presented the subject in the most general manner, 
believing that experience and practice alone will enable the Institution gradually to 
settle upon a complete system. The committee beg leave to add, that the present 
report is not to be regarded as final, but that it is submitted, with all due deference 
to the Institution, to use the concluding words of the resolution, ‘‘for its further 
consideration and action.’’ 


Shortly after this, on March 8, in order to provide for the reception 
of these collections, Doctor Henry King’ was elected curator of the 
National Institution, the first in Washington to bear an official title 
which has since been the designation of a goodly number of worthy 
workers in science. 

The curator, although an elective officer of the Institution, received 
his pay from the Congressional appropriation already referred to, an 
arrangement not unlike that which prevails to this day in the National 
Museum, where the officers, chosen by the Smithsonian Institution, are 
paid by the General Government. 

The collections arrived some time in March, and in response to its 
request Mr. Badger, the newly made Secretary of the Navy, placed them 
under the care of the National Institution, and in April, as we learn 
from the unpublished letters of the curator, the taxidermists were 
preparing about fifteen bird skins a day, a rate of speed which quite 
explains the atrocious condition of the preparations which have come 
down to us from those days of the infancy of the National Museum. 
In May additional collections, brought by the ship Swzanne to New 
York and thence transshipped by the schooner Palestine, were received 
in Washington. 

A new danger now threatened the integrity of the collections, which 
was that the curator found many of the boxes ‘‘marked in such a 


"Henry King, M. D., was a geologist and mining expert who had been a resident 
of Missouri, who had lately been employed in an exploration of the lead mines of 
the West, and who at this time was employed by the War Department in Washing- 
ton. He was the author of a manual of Directions for making Collections in Natu- 
ral History, published in 1840 by the Institution, the first part of a long series of 
pamphlets of scientific instructors, printed at the capital. [1840. King, Henry. 
Directions for making Collections in Natural History. Prepared for the National 
Institution for the Promotion of Science; by H. King, M. D. Washington. Printed 
by Gales & Seaton. 1840. 8vo., pp. 1-24.] 

Doctor King was elected curator March 8, 1841, and held the office until September 
12, 1842, when he was succeeded by Doctor Charles Pickering. 


Report of U. S. National Museum, 1897. Part II. PLATE 14. 


SAMUEL DE CHAMPLAIN. 


The Genests of the United States National Museum. 11g 


manner as to indicate that they belong to and are claimed by private 
persons,’’ these constituting a large part of the whole. 

Here, again, Mr. Poinsett had foreseen and provided against the 
danger, having instructed the curator, on a previous occasion, to pay no 
attention to private marks on collections received from a Government 
expedition. : 

The question was submitted to the Secretary of the Navy, who at once 
replied that, in his opinion, ‘‘all specimens collected by officers attached 
to the expedition belonged solely to the United States.’’ 

In April, 1841, the collections and library of the Institution were 
installed in the new Patent Office building, where they remained until 
removed to the Smithsonian, in 1857. 

Extensive plans were made for a system of international exchange, 
and a committee formulated the policy of the society in an elaborate 
report. 

Another Government collection soon came in consisting of the min- 
erals and geological specimens gathered by David Dale Owen, during his 
survey under the direction of the United States General Land Office, 
also a collection of ‘‘Indian portraits and curiosities,’’ transferred by 
the Secretary of War, and the Smithson cabinet, books and minerals, 
deposited by the Secretary of the Treasury, and a bill was passed by 
Congress, less important by reason of the appropriation of $500, which 
it makes, than from the fact that it justifies the Secretaries of War 
and of the Navy in transferring collections in their possession to the 
Institution. : 

On the rst of January, 1842, a letter was written by a committee of 
the National Institution to the Secretaries of War and the Navy. 

In February, 1842, another important paper was presented to the 
Institution by the same committee—important as marking the beginning 
of the system of exchanges and distribution of duplicates which had for 
nearly forty years been so important a feature of the work of the 
National Institution." 

With the exception of the papers already alluded to, which had refer- 
ence to the relation of the society to the Government and to the Smith- 
sonian bequest, the bulletin of proceedings from this time on contained 
little more than the record of the receipt of donations of specimens and 
of letters asking information or proffering advice. ‘The society retained 
the control of the exploring expedition collections, and in June, 1842, 
Lieutenant Wilkes having returned to Washington, he, at three succes- 
sive meetings of the Institute, gave a history of his voyage and its 
results. He was at first subjected to some opposition, and until after a 
court-martial, held in New York in August, seems to have been disposed 
to say very little. He, however, wrote, under date of July 16, 1842, a 


*This is printed in Note A from the manuscript report in the archives of the 
National Museum. 


120 Memortal of George Brown Goode. 


letter* to Senator Preston, in which he indignantly protested against 
the manner in which his officers and men had been received on their 
return. 

When he was restored to favor and influence, he at once took steps to 
gain control of the collections made by his squadron, provisionally under 
the charge of the National Institution, with results to be studied later. 


*This letter, now in the archives of the Museum and never published, is of so much 
interest historically, that after the lapse of nearly fifty years it is printed, in the cer- 
tainty that its harsh significance has all vanished. 


WASHINGTON Crtv, 76th July, 1872. 


My DEAR Sir: Agreeably to your desire, I hasten to give you the information rela- 
tive to the remaining duties of the Expedition, and that are absolutely necessary to 
carry out the intention of Congress in passing the Act authorizing the Expedition, 
viz, ‘‘for the promotion of the great interests of Commerce and Navigation, and to 
extend the bounds of science and promote the acquisition of knowledge.”’ 

For the accomplishment of these great objects, there was required persons to attend 
to the different departments of science, and the following was the organization which 
I proposed, and was adopted by the Government, and the most economical one that 
could have been arranged to carry out the great views intended, and that the accom- 
modations of the vessels would permit, viz: 

The Departments of Astronomy, Hydrography, Magnetism, Meteorology, and 
Physics, including the Experiments with the Invariable Pendulum, was confided 
to myself with the officers under my command as assistants, besides the above I 
was charged with the History or Narrative of the Voyage. 

This at once greatly reduced the Scientific Corps which had been organized, viz, 
from 23 to 9. I felt the Navy was justly entitled to all these departments, embraced 
as they were within the limits, or scope of the profession, and that they ought not to 
be attached to such an undertaking, to act as the ‘‘hewers of wood and drawers of 
water,’’ as was the case in its original organization. 

Charles Pickering and Titian R. Peale, naturalists; Horatio Hale, philologist; James 
D. Dana, geologist; William Rich, botanist; William Brackenridge, horticulturist 
and assistant botanist; Joseph Drayton and Alfred Agate, artists; J. P. Couthouy, 
conchologist, who was with the Expedition until the end of November, 1839, after 
which period his duties were divided among the rest and successfully performed. 
These formed the nine; to these was added a mechanic for the repair of instruments 
and their proper preservation. 

In all the above departments much remains to be done; indeed, I view the services 
of the above gentlemen as necessary now, and even more so than at any other period 
of the cruise, nor can their services be dispensed with, or the work concentrated, 
without great Joss to the Expedition, and the reputation of the country. For my own 
departments I require the services of Mr. Stewart, who was a clerk in the Expedition, 
but whom I have made hydrographical draughtsman, and some few of the officers, 
who have been my principal assistants. Mr. Stewart will be enabled also to assist 
me in my copying, etc. He is one of my own scholars and is now engaged in the 
duties assigned him. 

I truly regret that anything should have occurred to danipen the ardor of those 
who are attached to the Expedition, and absolutely necessary to the bringing out the 
results. Theardor that has been felt during the cruise has been all-important to our 
success, and has been in every way encouraged by me, and I did hope that it would 
have been kept alive until all had been accomplished. The reputation of our country 
is at stake, and if what has been attempted and succeeded in, is not now finished 


The Genesvws of the United States National Museum. 121 


In September, 1842, Doctor Charles Pickering became curator. He 
had been a member of the Wilkes exploring expedition and was occu- 
pied during his connection almost entirely in the work of unpacking and 
arranging its collections. 


from any motive of economy, or derangement of the organization all will be ruined, 
and we shall become the laughingstock of Europe, and all the praise that has been 

lavished on our Government for its noble undertaking prove but ‘satire in 

disguise.’’ 

What will be the reputation of those who have had the ordering of things since its 
return, on their becoming known on the other side of the waters? For the reception 
of myself I can easily account; but that of the officers and crews is truly unaccount- 
able, particularly the want of any expression of thanks from the Department to the 
latter on their discharge; it was felt by every officer and remarked by every man. 
On minor duties I have been gratified by it formerly, and I have with pleasure seen 
its effects upon many of the men that formed a part of the crews of this Expedition 
when on other service with me; I have urged it all in my power, but without effect ; 
every day develops some new opposition to the Expedition. I am aware youthink I 
want cause for this opinion; perhaps I am mistaken, but I can not but feel myself 
bound up in it; indeed it would be strange if I was not, and I must say it is heartsick- 
ening to me to hear those who have shared its dangers and troubles complaining of 
a want of attention and courtesy, and exhibiting the unceremonious discharges from~* 
their duties, with little or no prospect of consummating the labors in which they 
have been engaged for the last four years, and before they have even seen their fami- 
lies. Some are suffering under sickness contracted from their exposure in the serv- 
ice of their country. They are now suddenly cut off and destitute of support for 
themselves and families. These facts are well known. Such treatment is without 
precedent in the service of this, or any other country. 

Contrast our Expedition with those of the French and English engaged in the same 
service, and at the same time, honor and rewards are heaped on all at and before 
their return. Examine our results, compare them with theirs, contrast us in every 
way with them you please, or with Expeditions that have gone before us, and then 
ask if we have not reason to feel mortified. 

Do not misunderstand me. I ask nothing for myself at present, and will not as 
long as this mist hanging over me exists, but which any fair and candid examina- 
tions into my actions and conduct would have long since dissipated; neither do I ask 
impossibilities or undeserved praise; no greater punishment can be inflicted on the 
head of one who receives it. But I would ask: Is it not fully apparent and placed 
beyond cant that the men of the Expedition have done their duty, and did deserve 
the thanks of the Department before they were disbanded? It was openly com- 
plained of when they were paid off. 

I have greatly to complain of the course the Department has pursued towards 
myself, but I forbear to touch on this subject at present. 

In conclusion, my dear sir, I beg you will excuse this long letter and its tone. 
Whenever these subjects are brought to my mind I feel it acutely. All I do hope is 
that, for the credit of the Expedition, the honor and reputation of the country, you 
will not lose sight of what ought to be done. Fully confident I am that there is no 
subject in which the reputation of our country is so much at stake as the develop- 
ment of the results of the Exploring Expedition and on which its conduct will be 
so closely scrutinized abroad. I have the honor to be, with great respect, 

Yours, most truly, 
CHARLES WILKES. 

Hon. Won. C. Preston, Senator, U. S., Washington. 


122 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


In the meantime, in February, 1842, Doctor J. P. Couthouy, one of 
the naturalists of the expedition, having been detached from duty by 
Captain Wilkes, was employed by the committee of the Institution to 
aid in the work upon their collections, and in September Mr. W. D. 
Brackenridge, horticulturist of the expedition, was also taken upon the 
Museum staff and given charge of the plants,‘ and a little later Professor 
James D. Dana seems to have been given charge of the arrangement of 
the geological and mineralogical collections, not only of the exploring 
expedition, but of the Institution cabinet, including the Smithson, Owen, 
Locke, and Totten collections, and Horatio Hale was performing a simi- 
lar work upon the ethnographical collections of the Institution, which he 
reported upon as ‘‘chiefly from the exploring expedition.”’ 

The force at this time engaged upon the national collections, under 
the direction of the National Institution, consisted of Doctor Charles 
Pickering, principal curator; J. P. Couthouy, J. D. Dana, Horatio Hale, 
and W. D. Brackenridge, curators and assistants, and J. K. Townsend 
and John Varden, assistants. ‘Thomas Nuttall, the well-known botanist, 
had in 1841 been engaged upon the herbarium, but had now gone away. 

Here, then, in 1842, we find a strong Museum force at work on the 
collections, a force fully as efféctive thirty years later, in 1873, when the 
writer first became acquainted with the operations of the Smithsonian 
Institution. 

The report prepared by them at the end of the year 1842 was essen- 
tially the second official report upon the national collections, and since it 
has never been published, it is printed in Note B, at the end of this 
memoir. 

At the meeting of September 12 a resolution was passed in these words: 

Resolved, That a committee be appointed to wait upon the Secretary of the Navy, 
and upon the joint committee of the Library of Congress, and to proffer to them the 
cooperation of the Institute in carrying into effect the intentions of the law lately 
passed by Congress, for the arrangement and preservation of the collections made by 
the Exploring Squadron, and for the publication of the results of that Expedition ; 


and that this committee be authorized to act in the name and behalf of the Institute 
in all matters relating to this subject. 


In reply to the letter transmitting this resolution, the following letter 

was received: 
Navy DEPARTMENT, September 17, 1842. 

Srr: I have received your letter of the 15th instant, transmitting a copy of the 
resolutions of the National Institute passed on the 12th instant, in relation to the 
arrangement and preservation of the collections made by the exploring squadron, 
and informing me that Doctor C. Pickering had been unanimously elected curator of 
the Institute. 


“Mr. Brackenridge, on the return of the expedition in 1842, brought the live plants 
and seeds to Washington, and there being no place for their reception hired a green- 
house and cared for them, apparently on his own responsibility, for several months. 
Eventually they were provided for at the Botanic Garden about 1859, after having 
been for many years kept in greenhouses in the rear of the Patent Office, 


Report of U. S. National Museum, 1897. Part Il. PLATE 15. 


PIERRE FRANGOIS XAVIER DE CHARLEVOIX. 


The Genesis of the United States National Museum. — 123 


I shall be happy to receive the suggestions of the committee as to the proper course 

of proceeding. 
I am, respectfully, your obedient servant, 
AG bs UPSHUR: 

GARRETY R. BARRY, Esq., 

Recording Secretary National Institute, Washington. 

In the meantime a change in the status of the Government collections 
had been effected by the passage of an act of Congress, August 27, 1842, 
providing for the publication, under the supervision of the Joint Library 
Committee, of an account of the discovery made by the exploring expe- 
dition, the third section of which was as follows: 

That until other provisions be made by law for the safe-keeping and arrangement 
of such objects of natural history as may be in the possession of the Government, 
the same shall be deposited and arranged in the upper room of the Patent Office, 
under the care of such persons as may be appointed by the Joint Committee of the 
Library. 

By act of August 4, 1842 (Stat. V., 501), the sum of $20,000 had 
already been appropriated for the transportation, preservation, and 
arrangement of these collections. 

In the charter of the National Institute, passed a month before, there 
was a provision that all trusts ‘‘are vested and confirmed to the said 
corporation,’’ and the supporters of the Institute were disposed to urge 
that this was applicable to the collections of the ‘‘exploring squadron,”’ 
at that time in the custody of the Institution. The question did not 
come up in a troublesome way at this time, for the Library Committee, 
at that time unfriendly, simply confirmed the choice of curator made by 
the National Institute, and appointed Doctor Pickering to the position, 
Doctor Pickering being thenceforth subject to the Congressional com- 
mittee, and only by courtesy acting for the National Institute. 

Trouble was brewing, however, for it was evident that the links bind- 
ing together the interests of the National Institute and the exploring 
expedition were not very tenacious. There was in fact no legal authority 
for the agency of supervision which the Institution was now exercising, 
the whole being the outgrowth of a very informal understanding be- 
tween two or three successive Secretaries of the Navy and a committee 
of the Institution ‘‘appointed to correspond with the Departments of 
Government.’’ * 

This committee, composed of two of the most active directors and the 
corresponding secretary, soon began to perform the functions of a gen- 
eral executive committee—no doubt with the sanction of the society, but 
without direct authority. 

The recent acts of Congress had taken the aot of the collections 
away from the Navy Department, by whose act alone they had been placed 
in charge of the Institute. The committee of the Institute still believed 
_ itself responsible in an advisory way for the disbursement of the appro- 


«Proceedings of the National Institution, 2d Bull., p. 71. 


124 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


priation, but soon found expeditions in progress of which they had 
no knowledge. The committee filed a protest with Mr. Poinsett, their 
president, who seems to have at once taken steps to secure the only 
possible relief from the embarrassment—that of special legislation. 

The following bill was accordingly introduced in the Senate by the 
Hon. Robert J. Walker: 


A BILL, for the preservation of the collections of natural curiosities furnished by the exploring 
squadron, and from other sources. 

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of 
America in Congress assembled, That the board of management of the National 
Institute be, and is hereby, invested with the custody of the specimens of natural 
history, and other curiosities, which have been received, or which may have been 
received, or which may hereafter be received, from the exploring squadron, and 
from other sources, with authority to make all necessary arrangements to preserve 
and exhibit the same, to regulate the number and compensation of persons employed 
on said duty, and to superintend the disbursements relating thereto. 

And be it further enacted, That the said board is hereby authorized to exchange 
any of the duplicates of said collections with other institutions, or with State authori- 
ties, or with individuals. ‘ 


At the request of Senator Walker two of the members of the commit- 
tee had drawn up a statement of the relations which they deemed it 
desirable to have established between the Institution and the General 
‘Government in respect to the national collections. This statement was 
submitted by Senator Walker, not as an official document emanating 
from the Institute, but with the heading ‘‘ Remarks submitted by Mr. 
Markoe and Colonel Abert to the Hon. Mr. Walker.’’ ‘This was cer- 
tainly an unfortunate form of introduction to Congress, and the oppo- 
nents of the National Institute made the most of it. The bill with the 
accompanying statement was referred to the Joint Committee on the 
Library, and on the 28th of February was made the subject of a report 
presented by Senator Tappan,’ in which he ridiculed the idea of placing 
the results of a great Government expedition in the hands of a ‘‘private 
corporation,’’ and advised members of the National Institute to disabuse 
themselves of the idea that regular appropriations would ever be made 
for its benefit. ‘‘’The case presents,’’ he remarked, ‘‘ two officers of the 
Government, one the head of a bureau, the other a clerk in one of the 
public offices, who ask as a matter of right that they should have the 
supervision of a very important literary and scientific work, the publica- 
tion of which Congress has thought proper to intrust to one of its regular 
committees.’? The recommendation of the committee was that the 
responsibility of this work remain in the hands of the Joint Committee 
on the Library, where it had originally been placed by law. Senator 
Tappan’s attack was evidently based upon a partial misunderstanding of 
the views of the members of the National Institute, who simply asked 
the custody of the collections and the authority to supervise their arrange- 
ment. Colonel Abert and Mr. Markoe were indignant at the injustice, 


‘Senate Document 233, see note D to this paper. 


The Genesis of the United States Nationat Museum. 125 


and addressed to Senator Walker a letter in further explanation of their 
views. 

This letter, with the comments upon it by Senator Walker and Sena- 
tor Preston, is printed in a note appended to this memoir,’ accompanied 
by a hitherto-unpublished letter from Senator Woodbridge, of Michigan, 
who, as a member of the committee, was able to explain the real signifi- 


cance of its action. 
All of these papers are given in a pamphlet’ published at the time, 


which is, however, now exceedingly rare and almost forgotten. 

The versions of the papers here given are for the most part from the 
originals or verified copies in the archives of the National Museum. 

Senator Tappan’s speech and the subsequent action of Congress did 
much to undermine the foundation of the Institute, which was evidently 
scarcely solid enough to sustain the structure which it had been proposed 
to rear upon them. 

After this it was inevitable that there should arise conflicts of authority, 
and they were not slow in coming. 

It is possible that they were precipitated by Captain Wilkes, who 
naturally may have felt some irritation at the manner in which the con- 
trol of the collections made by his expedition were taken out of his control, 
while he himself was for a time under charges. 

The Commissioner of Patents, too, seems to have been irritated by the 
occupation of a hall in the Patent Office controlled by alien authority. 

In July, 1843, Doctor Pickering resigned his curatorship, and the 
Library Committee, now hostile and acting in the spirit of their report, 
made use of the authority vested in them by the act of August 26, 1842, 
and appointed to the custodianship of the Government collections the 
Commissioner of Patents, Mr. Ellsworth, and in August placed Captain 
Wilkes in special charge of the gatherings of the exploring expedition. 

The action of the committee does not appear to have been known to 
the officers of the Institute except by rumor, but they were left to find 
out the change of policy by an unpleasant series of experiences. 

The first serious friction was in connection with Captain Wilkes. Its 
character is shown by the following correspondence, which is here printed 
on account of the new light it throws upon the condition of the National 
Cabinet of Curiosities in the years 1843-44 and upon the otherwise inex- 
plicable circumstances which led to the collapse of the National Institute 
shortly afterwards: 


LETTER FROM COLONEL ABERT TO CAPTAIN WILKES, SEPTEMBER 5, 1843. 


DEAR SIR: Reports of a painful character, involved in the questions of the 
inclosed letter, have reached the ears of many of us, and I have been urged as chair- 
man of the committee having charge of these matters to bring them before the 


* Note EB, I, II, Ul, Iv. 
. 71843. [Abert, John J., and Francis Markoe, jr.] Reply | of | Colonel Abert and 
Mr. Markoe | to the | Hon. Mr. Tappan | of the | United States Senate. —— Wash- 
ington, —, Wm. Q. Force, printer. | 1843. | 8 vo. pp. 1-18. 


126 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


Directors. But I refused, on the ground that I would not be the medium of bringing 
forward misunderstood or exaggerated facts, for discussion or action, preferring the 
course of the inclosed letter, as it will procure the desired information from the best 
authority and under its true aspect. It seems to me that the Institute is the last 
which should receive unkindness from anyone whose fame is connected with 
the results of the exploring squadron, for without the interference of the Institute 
where would these results have been; and without its future care what will become 
of them, for what other body in whose care they can be placed has a permanent 


domicile at Washington. 
Ja] -ABERI 
Capt. WILKES. 


LETTER FROM COLONEL ABERT TO CAPTAIN WILKES, SEPTEMBER 5, 1843. 


S1r: It is contemplated soon to have a meeting of the Directors of the National 
Institute, at which matters of much interest to the Institute will be brought up. 
Understanding that you have been placed in charge of the room in which both 
Institute and ex. [ploring] expedition curiosities are deposited, and anxious that at 
our meeting the Directors should be fully and correctly informed, allow us to beg of 
you the favor of an early answer to the following queries: 

1. Have directions been given to remove the property of the Institute and that 
under its care, except exploring expedition specimens, from the room in which they 
now are or fromm the cases in which they have been deposited, or are such directions 
contemplated? 

2. Are the persons employed at the room and paid by the U. S. prohibited from 
bestowing any attention upon any other than ex. [ploring] exp. [edition] specimens, 
from opening the boxes of presents sent to the Institute, cleaning, arranging, and 
attending to the same? 

3. Will any of the persons employed at the room and paid by the U. S. be allowed 
to bestow any of their time and talents upon the preservation and arrangement of 
the collections, except those of the ex. [ploring] squadron? 

4. Can the Institute count with sufficient certainty upon the services of any person 
so employed so as to invest him or them as curators or assistants with the requisite 
authority from the Institute? 

You will readily perceive the importance of these questions to the Institute, and 
how eminently they invoke the security and preservation of the valuable and extensive 
collection under its care; you will, therefore I hope, pardon us in the request of an 


early answer. 
J. J. ABERT: 
Capt. CHARLES WILKES, 


U.S. Navy, Washington. 


LETTER FROM CAPTAIN WILKES TO COLONEL ABERT, SEPTEMBER 16, 1843. 


WASHINGTON Cry, 16 Sepi., 7843. 


Mv DEaR SiR: Your friendly letter was received on my return to the city after a 
short absence, which will account for your not having an earlier reply. 

I can not acknowledge any right in a committee of the Nat. [ional] Ins. [titute] 
to call upon me for any explanations whatever relative to my official duties or 
actions, particularly when such a call is based upon (as you inform me) ‘‘painful 
reports’? of which I have no knowledge and little regard, and can not help express- 
ing my astonishment that any members of a scientific society should have given 
credence to them, to have authorized an action on the part of one of their com- 
mittees before they had ascertained that they were true. 


Report of U. S. National Museum, 1897. Part Il. PLATE 16. 


The Genests of the United States National Museum. 18 i 


I can not but admire your course in refusing to act, or be the medium of bringing 
them forward for discussion or action before an appeal was made to the best authority. 
I therefore feel much pleasure in answering the questions as coming from yourself, 
and do it particularly with a view that you may communicate it to any of the gentle- 
men, your associates, who may have been instrumental in getting up and giving cur- 
rency to the reports which you inform me are in circulation. 

1st. The law places the collections of the United States Exploring Expedition in 
the upper hall of the Patent Office building and under the care of the Joint Library 
Committee of Congress for the purpose of arranging the whole for description, publi- 
cation, and exhibition. The Library Com[mitt]ee have appointed me to superintend 
them to this end. In pursuance of my duties the whole is undergoing arrangement. 
When I took charge on the 1st of August a few specimens and articles were pointed 
out to me as belonging to the Nat[ional] Inst[itute]; those have not been disturbed 
further than became necessary in the arrangements, and an equal care has been 
bestowed upon them that others have received. 

2d. All the persons employed and paid by the Government are required to devote 
themselves entirely to the Government work; when there is no longer employment 
for them, or they do not give satisfaction, they will be discharged. It is believed 
that their time is now fully employed, and that their duties require all their time 
and talents to be devoted to the collection of the Expedition in order to perform 
them to the satisfaction of the Library Committee and myself. They are under the 
same system as if employed elsewhere by the Government. From this it follows 
that their time and services for which the Gov[ernmen]t pays can not be devoted 
to or divided with any incorporated association. 

Although believing that the above embraces an answer to all the enquiries made 
of me I will go further and assure you that there is every disposition on the part of 
the Library Com[mitt]ee of Congress and myself to have the few things belonging to 
the Nat[ional] Inst[itute] that are now in the hall taken care of, and due notice will 
be given to the Institute should the little room they occupy be required for collection 
of the Exp[loring] Exp[e]d[ition], which it is now confidently believed will entirely 
fill the hall when they are fully arranged. I will now close with a few words respect- 
ing the last clause of your letter relative to my feeling any ‘‘unkindness’’ towards 
the Nat[ional] Inst[itute]. It is rather improbable that any unkindness or hostility 
should exist on my part considering that the labour of the Expedition, combined 
with the exertion of your gifted president (Mr. Poinsett), were the origin of it, and 
that in all probability it may one day become the depository of the large and valuable 
collection of the Exp[lorin]g Expedition, therefore I can not but feel deeply inter- 
ested in its welfare—everything compatible with the performance of my public duties 
will always be done to accommodate and assist its rise and progress. 

Believe me, with great respect, your obt. svt., 
CHARLES WILKES. 

Col. J. J. ABERT, 

U.S. Corps Top. Engrs. 


LETTER FROM COLONEL ABERT TO CAPTAIN WILKES, SEPTEMBER, 1843. 


DEAR SrR: Your letter has been duly received. As well for our own justification 
and for your satisfaction, I will go into some length in a reply. 

Abstractly speaking, there may be no right in the Institute to enquire into the 
course of your official action, but if under any circumstances this action be hazard- 
ous to the property of the Institute, or to that deposited and placed under its care, 
there can be no doubt, I think, that the Institute has a right to enquire if such be 
the case and why. 


128 Memortal of George Brown Goode, 


You can, if you choose, give us a very short reply—that what you have done was 
in the execution of your official duties, for which you can account only to your offi- 
cial superiors. Yet, nevertheless, the Institute would have the right to make the 
enquiry and to expect an answer of some kind. But allow me to call your attention 
to the reflection that it is in your civil relation of an agent of the Library Committee 
in which you are now temporarily acting, and it is only in that capacity that any 
accountability can attach to you, or that any was supposed by the committee of the 
Institute to exist. 

As an officer of the Navy you can not now be acting; your course is not by virtue 
of your commission or rank in the Navy, or orders from your constitutional or legal 
superiors, or of any duties connected with your profession. No official responsibility 
can exist between Capt. Wilkes, of the Navy, and the Library Committee, or official 
penalties be incurred by a neglect of its directions. Your position, if I understand 
it correctly, is by virtue of the authority in the Library Committee to place the col- 
lection under the care of such persons as they may appoint. The executive or the 
constitutional superior of the Army, as well as Navy, were it to assign you to a 
ship to-morrow, you would have to go and abandon the care assigned to you by the 
Library Committee, which shows, I think, that it is not the official relations of the 
offices which are involved in your present position. Dr. King once had the place, 
then Dr. Pickering, to whom you succeeded. Both of these gentlemen were civilians, 
and as you succeeded them in your present place it is clear, I think, that it is not in 
any official relation which Capt. Wilkes can claim, or to which he can be assigned, 
that he is now acting, but in the civil relation of a person appointed by the Joint 
Library Committee to take charge of matters the publication of which has been 
made a duty of that committee. I make these explanations of our views that you 
may feel relieved from the supposition that we had the most remote idea of encroach- 
ing upon your official rights, for which I assure you, as well as for your well-estab- 
lished professional abilities, we all entertain the greatest respect. 

The specimens of the Exploring Squadron are to be deposited and arranged in the 
upper room of the Patent Office. This, however, does not, we think, give the exclu- 
sive possession of that room for that purpose unless such exclusive possession be 
necessary. Whether it be or not, I am willing to admit, is the right of the Library 
Committee to decide, and if they so decide others must give way. The sign lately 
put over the door would seem to indicate that such decision was in contemplation, 
The Institute has also possession of part of that room, of the eastern half, by direc- 
tion of the Secretary of State, under whose care the whole building was then placed. 
The Institute has property there of great amount and, in our judgment, of great 
value, and if it has to move its property, by virtue of a decision by the Library Com- 
mittee, the courtesy of notice from the agent of that committee is not, I think, too 
much to expect, and our right to enquire if we shall have to move should be viewed 
as a duty on our part as the curator of so much property. I assure you the enquiry 
was made with these impressions only. Your assurance that notice will be given if 
we should have to move leaves us satisfied in this respect. 

All that belongs to the Exploring Squadron is under the care of the Library Com- 
mittee oritsagent. But the Institute is a legal body, regularly chartered with defined 
rights over its property, gifts, and deposits. (See law of 27 July, 1842.) Now, what 
is this property? Gifts and deposits from members, from foreign governments, from 
distinguished foreigners, from our diplomatic agents, from foreign societies, from 
domestic societies, from departments of our own Government, from our own citizens. 
In a word, all the property in the room, except that of the Exploring Squadron and 
that of the Patent Office, which (Institute) property, unless I am very much mis- 
taken, far exceeds the impression you have of it, and judging from some remark 
about the few things of the Institute. 

Now, this property requires care, watching, and cleaning. 


The Genests of the United States National Museum. 129 


I have at this time in my office twenty-four cases of the most valuable specimens 
sent from Asia and Mexico to the Institute which we have not sent up, because we 
were informed they would probably not be received, and would certainly not be 
allowed to be opened and exhibited, as some 60 boxes or more of Institute specimens 
are now in the room unopened and unattended to. Surely it was proper that such 
matters should be inquired into if only for the future government of the course of 
the Institute. We can not be without anxiety for our valuable collection nor 
unmindful of our obligations to preserve it. 

I feel satisfied you will see with me only matter of lamentation in such a state of 
things. Science and national pride must bitterly regret any seeming necessity for it. 

All the labor, all the contributions, from whatever branch of service, civil, diplo- 
matic, navy, military, are for the scientific reputation of our common country, and 
a hearty union of all is necessary to form a good collection. Deprive it of the charm 
of being National, deprive it of that halo of interest with which the name National 
has already covered it, and it will soon cease to increase, will be no longer worthy 
of a thought, and will rapidly degenerate to the insignificance of a local collection. 

Such are at least my views, and such were also the views which brought the 
National Institute into existence, when about eight of us had our first meetings at 
Mr. Poinsett’s. We then digested a scheme in which we thought all persons could 
unite, because it was National; which all parties could befriend, because it was 
National; to which all conditions and branches of service could contribute, because 
it was National; to which the Government might extend its patronizing hand, because 
it was National, because it aided and elevated the National character, and because 
it would furnish a broad platform of National feeling, upon which all parties, all 
sects, all conditions of life could, on principles cherished by all, meet and unite in 
erecting a temple to National fame. And how charmingly have we gone on; look 
at our great accumulations for so short a time, and yet it is all but.a good beginning; 
look at the feeling which exists throughout our country and throughout the world 
in our fayor, evidenced by contributions and letters from all quarters, and then ask 
the question whether to aid or to embarrass a design so glorious and so free from 
objections will give the most individual fame? 

But we must know our condition, and what we have to depend upon. It is essen- 
tial that we should, and you, as the agent of the Library Committee, are the only 
person from whom we can obtain the desired information. Therefore, of necessity, 
we had to address ourselves to you, and if I understand your answer correctly it is: 
That you do not consider yourself at liberty to allow any of the persons receiving 
pay from the United States to give any of their time or attention to the affairs of the 
Institute, to overhaul or arrange or look after its specimens. 

Both of your predecessors, Dr. King and Dr. Pickering, were also, with the appro- 
bation of the executive, Curators to the Institute, and gave some attention to its 
affairs. We did not, of course, expect that you would take a similar trouble upon 
yourself, and one question in my previous letter was to ascertain if you would allow 
any of those under you to attend to the Institute collection and property. I under- 
stand you also as thinking this beyond your power. Under these circumstances the 
Institute must act, and promptly, or its valuable collection will be injured. The 
board of management will soon meet and the matter will be brought before them. 

If in anything I have misunderstood you, I beg that you will not delay to correct 
me, for be assured that I have no desire to put anyone in the wrong, and least of all 
the eminent commander of the Exploring Expedition. 


ines 

_ Soon afterwards a more serious conflict of authority began—this time 

with the Commissioner of Patents, who was actually the official guar- 

‘dian, not only of a portion of the collections, but of the hall in which 
NAT MUS 97, PT 2 9 


130 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


the entire cabinets, both of the society and the Government, were 
lodged. | 

The correspondence referred to in Mr. Ellsworth’s first letter evidently 
related to the great mass of native copper of the Ontonagon (still a 
prominent feature in the National Museum), which the Secretary of 
War had placed in the custody of the Institute at its meeting in Octo- 
ber previous. Mr. Ellsworth was evidently bent upon dislodging the 
National Institute from the Patent Office. To effect this he pursued the 
not altogether ingenuous course of belittling the Institute, its work, and 
the extent of its cabinet, and laying claim to the official possession of 
more important collections of models, fabrics, manufactures, which, in 
accordance with the act of 1836, reorganizing the Patent Office, he 
designates as the ‘‘ National Gallery,’’ a name which he also applied to 
the great hall in which all the collections were deposited. 

The Commissioner of Patents was evidently legally in the right, and 
the Institute found itself bereft not only of its command of Government 
collections, but also of its hall. 

The correspondence is here printed. 


LETTER FROM ‘THE COMMISSIONER OF PATENTS TO THE SECRETARY OF WAR, 
DECEMBER 7, 1842. 
PATENT OFFICE, 
Washington, December 7th, 1842. 

Srr: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of a letter from the Secretary of 
War of the 2d inst., communicating the information that my letter to his Depart- 
ment of ist inst. had been referred to a committee of the National Institute for 
answer. 

Permit me to enclose a copy of the correspondence with said committee. I have 
ventured to say in my reply that I did not believe their letter to myself had met 
your approval. 

The Hon. Sec’y will imagine my surprise at the letter of the committee when he 
is informed that the Commissioner of Patents has the custody of the Patent Office 
building ; that he holds a special appointment under the Joint Committee of the 
Library to take charge of all the property of Government mentioned in the act of 
August 26, 1842, and more especially as the National Institute has omitted to appoint 
a Curator to protect the other articles received from the War and Navy Departments, 
or even their own effects in this building since July last, and hence the care has 
devolved upon myself as an act of courtesy if not of duty. 

Under these circumstances, and having interested myself in the exhibition of the 
copper rock at the seat of Government, I offered to take charge of it, under the 
direction of the Secretary of War, if he desired it. 

The disappointment expressed by many members of Congress at not finding this 
beautiful specimen in the National Gallery prompted me, at the date of my letter, 
to make, as I hoped, a respectful offer to the Hon. Secretary of my services. Nor 
would I have replied to the committee had I not supposed that silence might seem 
to admit that I had been guilty of great presumption. 

Let me add that I am a member of the Institute and cherish its welfare. 

I remain, with highest respect, your’s, obediently, 


H. L. ELLSworTH. 
Hon: J; Vo seORa eR, 


Secy. of War. 


Report of U. S, National Museum, 1897, Part Il. PLATE 17. 


The Genesis of the United States National Museum. 131 


LETTER FROM COLONEL, ABERT TO THE COMMISSIONER OF PATENTS, 
DECEMBER 5, 1843. 
WASHINGTON, Dec. 5, 1843. 


Str: The honorable Secretary of War has referred to the committee of the 
National Institute your letter of the rst inst. 

Being uninformed by any law or regulation of the existence of a ‘‘ National Gal- 
lery””’ or of any other collection under your care than the Models of the Patent 
Office, you will pardon me if I do not fully appreciate the views or reasoning of 
your letter, 

At one period, by order of the Executive, the upper room of the Patent Office 
was made the place of deposit for the effects of the ‘‘ National Institute,’’ a society 
known to our laws and regularly chartered by Congress. This room thus became 
the Hall of the Institute. In this room the Institute has deposited the collections 
from the exploring squadron, and those from all other sources which were placed 
under its care by order of the Executive. But from a supposed necessity, Congress 
vested the care of the deposit from the exploring squadron for the purpose of pre- 
paring an account of it, in such person as the Joint Library Committee should 
appoint. This committee appointed Capt. Wilkes, of the Navy, for that purpose, 
who is now exercising the functions of his office, and who may with propriety be 
considered as in the regular official possession of the room. 

In all this one sees nothing of the Patent Office or of any ‘‘ National Gallery’’ or 
of any charge direct or indirect of the Patent Office over the deposits referred to. 
If therefore by ‘‘ National Gallery’’ is intended to designate the room in which are 
now placed the deposits of the Institute and of the exploring squadron, it is not a 
room over which the head of the Patent Office can exercise control. 

By alaw of the 20th July, 1840, the Secretaries of the War and Navy Departments 
were placed in charge of the specimens of Natural History, received and to be 
received by them, and funds were appropriated for their preservation. These officers 
have deposited such articles as were then in their possession, and such as have since 
been received in the care of the National Institute, as that law and the practice 
under it are considered as prescribing the course on these subjects, and in the 2d 
section of the law of July 27, 1842, all these deposits and the principle upon which 
they were made were confirmed and legalized. When therefore the copper rock 
arrived, to which your letter refers, the honorable Secretary of War, in conformity 
of law and usage, placed it under the care of the National Institute. 

As it was understood to be rather an inconvenience to Capt. Wilkes from the 
want of space to receive any more articles of the Institute in the Hall under his care, 
and as the Institute has at present no Curator there, those boxes and articles which 
have come to hand within the last few months have been temporarily deposited 
elsewhere, and among others the copper rock. The Committee of the Institute which 
received this rock had it deposited in the War Office yard, where it is accessible 
without impediment to all who are disposed to examine it, and where it is under the 
efficient protection of the guard of the War and Navy Department buildings. 

Very respectfully, your obt. svt., 
J. J. ABERT, 
Ch. Com, Nat. Inst. 

H. L. ELLSwor tH, Esqr., 

Commr. of Patents, Washington. 


132 Memortal of George Brown Goode. 


LETTER FROM THE COMMISSIONER OF PATENTS TO COLONEL ABERT, 
DECEMBER #7, 1843. 


PATENT OFFICE, December 7, 1843. 


Str: I have to acknowledge the receipt of yours of the 5th inst. 

The Hon. Sec’y of War has, it seems, referred to the Chairman of the Commit- 
tee of the National Institute the answer of my letter to his Department, offering 
to receive for exhibition at the National Gallery the ‘‘copper rock.”’ 

I can not withhold my surprise or the expression of my regret that the committee 
of the Institute on the reference of my letter deemed it necessary to declare their 
unwillingness to recognize any such place as the ‘‘ National Gallery’’ under my care 
and to question the right of the Commissioner of Patents to the use of the large Hall 
in the Patent Office building, and still more at ¢hezr claim of right to use that Hall 
when their accommodations were only enjoyed at the convenience of the Commis- 
sioner of Patents. ‘To this unexpected reply to my letter I can not believe the Hon, 
Secretary of War has given his approval. 

Permit me to refer the Committee to the Act of July,’36, reorganizing the Patent 
Office. The first section gives the Commissioner of Patents the care of the models 
of Patents, records, books, &c., &c. 

The 20th section establishes a ‘‘ National Gallery,’ in which the Commissioner of 
Patents is bound to exhibit not only models but fabrics, manufactures, &c. 

To carry out the design of this law cases have been erected at great expense and 
many articles collected, while additions are daily made. 

It is true that the National Institute did seek to obtain the entire control of the 
large room in the Patent Office. A refusal was given because the Patent Office 
building was by law placed under the care of the Commissioner of Patents and 
because the room was needed, at least in part, by the office. 

The law of August 26th, ’42, to which you refer, simply enacts: 

“That until other provisions be made by law for the safe keeping and arrange- 
ment of such objects of natural history as may be in possession of Government, the 
same shall be deposited and arranged in the upper room of the Patent Office under 
the care of such person as may be appointed by the Joint Committee of the Library.” 
The act evidently did not contemplate the exclusive control of the room, but a super- 
vision of the articles entrusted to the care of said Library Committee. 

This Committee on advisement with the War and Navy Department appointed 
Dr. C. Pickering, who enjoyed the use of the Hall in common with the Patent 
Office in a manner I had supposed entirely satisfactory to all concerned. 

To relieve this Bureau from care and responsibility I proposed to the Hon. Secre- 
tary of State to transfer to Dr. Pickering the custody of the archives, jewels, etc., 
received from the Department, but the Secretary declined, observing the Commis- 
sioner of Patents was a branch of the State Department, and he could not consent 
to place the articles confided to him under care of a corporation or a stranger over 
whom he had no control. 

In July last Dr. Pickering resigned his trust. The Joint Committee of the Library, 
upon whom alone devolved the right of filling the vacancy, entirely unexpectedly to 
myself, conferred the appointment on the Commissioner of Patents. Of course the 
Commissioner of Patents has now by law the custody of the large Hall, which in all 
official correspondence has been called the ‘‘ National Gallery.” 

I will remark that the Hon. Secretary of State expressed a wish in the letter giv- 
ing directions as to the large Hall that the National Institute might be permitted to 
occupy any ‘‘empty cases’? so long as this could be done without inconvenience to 
the Patent Office. In this request I most heartily acquiesced, and have permitted 
the Institute to enjoy from time to time a very considerable portion of the upper and 
lower stories. And while the Commissioner of Patents has the sole custody of the 


The Genests of the United States National Museum. 133 


building, the Institute may be assured that the articles deposited by them will receive 
the same care and watchfulness as those belonging to the Patent Office or those 
received from the Government. 

It has given me pleasure to try to accommodate all parties, hoping that Congress 
would make further provisions as appeared to be necessary. The time has now 
arrived when the wants of the Patent Office imperiously require more of the large 
Hall, and it remains for the National Legislature to determine who shall be accom- 
modated when there is not room for all. 

I regret your correspondence has compelled me to say thus much in defense of the 
position I have the honor to hold, 

Yours, respectfully, 
H. Ll. ELLSWORTH. 

Col; joe ABERT, ; 

Chn. Com. Nat. Inst. 


Still another blow was in reserve. Statements were made in public to 
the effect that the collections of the Institute were of very trifling value, 
and one which appears to have been printed, though I can gain no infor- 
mation as to its nature, made certain charges in connection with the por- 
traits in the possession of the Institute, intended to show that the Institute 
was ‘‘unworthy of the patronage of the Government.’’ 

This happened apparently during the great meeting of the friends of 
the Institute in April, 1844, evidently with the intention of counteracting 
any effect which the assemblage might produce upon Congress. 

Mr. George P. Marsh, M. C., at this time (April 4) addressed a letter 
to the corresponding secretary of the Institute, stating that its memorial 
had been referred to him as a member of the Library Committee of Con- 
gress, and asking for information to enable him to meet objections made 
by persons unfriendly to the Institution. The information given in the 
following letter in fact constitutes a third report upon the national col- 
lection, a little more than a year subsequent to the date of those already 
quoted: 


LETTER FROM MESSRS. MARKOEK AND ABERT TO THE HON. GEORGE P. MARSH, 
APRIL, 8, 1844. 
Wasw’N, 8 April, 1844. 
To Mr. Mars, H. Reps. 

DEAR Sir: Your letter of the 4 inst. has been received. It found me occupied by 
numerous & pressing engagements, and left so short a space of time for reply that I 
have been compelled to call for aid upon a friend, Col. Abert, with whom I was for a 
long time associated a member of an important committee of the Institute, whose 
business it was to understand its affairs. 

It is to be deplored that there are persons so unfriendly to the Institute, as to state 
‘‘ that its collections are of very trifling extent and value, and that for this and other 
reasons not necessary now to be specified, the Institute is unworthy the patronage 
of the Government.’? Some consolation, however, is derived from the assurance, 
that you do not entertain these opinions, and from the opportunity which is now 
offered of correcting at least one of these erroneous opinions the only one that has 
been presented with sufficient distinctness to be met, namely, that which refers to 

_the extent and value of the Institute’s collections. We should have rejoiced if ‘‘ the 
other reasons’’ had been as candidly and specifically made, so that they might be as 


134 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


promptly and explicitly met. Weseize this occasion to assure you of our readiness, 
our anxious desire, to meet any unfounded report or misrepresentation which may 
have led to the assertion, that the Institute is unworthy the patronage of the Gov- 
ernment. We are the more anxious as the assertion seems to have grown out of 
other considerations than the supposed trifling extent and value of the collections of 
the Institute. 

The property of the Institute is of two kinds: That which it owns, the result of 
donations & purchases, and that which it holds by Deposit. The latter kind, by our 
Charter cannot be withdrawn, even by depositors, till after due notice has been 
given. The statement which follows, made by Col. Abert & wh. embraces a very 
inadequate description of the property, embraces gifts, purchases & deposits is taken 
from the records of the Institute, and it may be verified at any time by reference to the 
records, an attentive examination of wh. would show that the property of the Insti- 
tute is of immense value, & of great American as well as general interest; & that it 
is increasing every day in a wonderful manner—a perusal of the two Bulletins of 
the proceedings of the Institute wh. have been published will give you the details 
for two years of these accumulated & accumulating materials, & the unpublished 
Records wh. go back for two years will supply the rest—Mr. Markoe begs leave to 
add that the MS. matter wh. accompanied the memorial to Congress, & wh. has 
happily been placed in your hands, embraces a very condensed view, wh. he pre- 
pared with great care & toil of all the contributions, donations & deposits which 
have been made to the Inst. since its foundation in May 1840, up to March 1844, & 
of the names of the contributors, donors, & depositors. For a refutation of such 
misstatements we refer you to these exact details, & sincerely hope that Congress 
will publish them for its own information as wellas for the information of the world 
& as an act of justice to the Institute. 

The collections referred to are in the great hall of the Patent office, at the Treas- 
ury, War & State Depts., at Col. Abert’s office & at the house of the Secretary of the 
Inst. Besides wh. letters have lately been rec’d. announcing the approach of great 
quantities of boxes of books, specimens of natural history, & other miscellaneous 
presents, from for. Govts. Ministers & Consuls of the U. S., from officers of the 
Army & Navy, & from many Societies & individuals both at home & abroad. 

In conclusion, while we invite scrutiny in any shape, we take the liberty of sug- 
gesting our earnest & anxious wish to meet a committee wh. whenever appointed 
will find us prepared to explainthe character & merits of the Inst. & effectually to 
defeat unfounded & irresponsible surmises. 


With true regards, Yr. obt. humble svts. 
FRANCIS MARKOE, jr. 


Ja j= ABERT 


Imperfect & hasty statement of the collections & specimens, being either the 
absolute property of the Institute, or specially deposited under its care. It is 
believed, that the greater part of these, will eventually become the property of the 
Institute; many of them having already become so. 

Minerals—tst. About 6000 miscellaneous specimens from all quarters. 

2d. A complete collection of about 10,000 specimens. 

3d. In addition there are about 190 boxes or collections, not examined or opened. 
They are spoken of as ‘‘boxes’’ or ‘‘collections,’’ because the donors used these 
terms in their letters presenting them and they are accordingly so entered upon the 
Journals of the Institute. 

4th. There are also 4 boxes of splendid minerals of Mexico, presented by His 
Exc. Mr. Tonsel the Minister of War & Marines of Mexico, and one box Mex. 
Antiquities. 

Fossils.—Upwards of 30 boxes and seven or 8 thousand miscellaneous specimens 
& casts of rare fossils, 


Report of U.S. National Museum, 1897. 


Part Il. 


PLATE 18. 


The Genesis of the United States National Museum. 135 


Birds.—ist, 1368 separate specimens; 2d. nine large boxes, one of which contains 
27 dozen skins of rare birds from Brazil. 

Quadrupeds.—Between 4 and 500 specimens. Insects 74100 specimens, and more 
than a dozen boxes besides not opened. Most of these in a deplorable condition for 
want of funds to preserve & arrange them. 

Shells. —1638 specimens, & more than 20 boxes and one barrel, 

An immense number of fishes, reptiles mollusca, et cetera, One donor, Lt. Ged- 
ney, U. S. N., gave upwards of 600 specimens & a large & rare collection of reptiles, 
fishes &c. which composed a part of the munificent gift of Prince Momfanoi, of 
Spain. 

Coins, medals & medallions, antique & modern, embracing very many extremely 
rare & valuable series, gold, silver & copper &c. Ist. 573 specimens; 2d. seven boxes. 

Maps and atlasses in great numbers; books & pamphlets, between 4 & 5000, many 
very rare, sent by the Russian, French, Belgian, Brazilian & other governments, & 
from Societies in various countries. About 1ooo engravings, many extremely choice, 
by the first Artists in the world, and several large boxes of books & engravings not 
opened. 

Specimens of woods, marbles, domestic manufactures, fossil teeth, megatherium 
bones, Ancient vases & vessels, electrotype pictures, mosaics, Egyptian & South Sea 
idols, large collections of human quadruped & bird crania, antique masks, rare col- 
lection of Indian dresses &c., daguerreotype pictures, corals & coralines, large col- 
lection of dried plants from all parts of the world. Specimens of art implements 
&c., and an infinite diversity of contributions of every description too complicated 
& various to enumerate. 

The Columbian Institute’s collection consisting of a large number of books, works 
of art, specimens of Nat. Hist., all which are now the property of the Nat. Insti- 
tute. Models of monuments, & of works of art etc. etc. Several hundred Indian 
Portraits, and other paintings, many very rare & valuable & some the production of 
the best masters. 

Skeletons, Antlers, Horns, Teeth, Bones & casts of various quadrupeds & other 
animals. 

Indian Musical & other Instruments & implements & Lithographic portraits & 
drawings in great numbers. 

Large collection of objects of Natural History, idols, fabrics, antique works of art 
&c. from Egypt and Africa, many of great curiosity & rarity, from various persons, &c. 

Collection of Statuary, busts & casts. 

Large collection of trilobites & rare fossils. 

Dr. Franklin’s printing press. 

A collection of Bedouine war instruments, & a variety of oriental curiosities. 

A series of fine Electrotype medals, embracing the British & French Sovereigns, 
from William the Conqueror to Victoria, and from Pharamond to Louis Philippe. 

It is scarcely possible, in reply to your note wh. calls for an immediate answer to 
enumerate further, but we don’t depend on so scant a list, given in terms necessarily 
somewhat vague. We call special attention to the minute & exact detail given in 
the abstract of the proceedings of the Inst. prepared by Mr. Markoe, & wh. accom- 
panies the memorial to Congress, where every thing will be found exhibited & 
described. We believe that if the collections of the Inst. are not already as great in 
value as those brought home by the Exploring Expedition, they will become far 
more so in a very short time. In American interest the Institute’s collections far 
transcend the other. 


In answer, apparently to a subsequent inquiry from Mr. Marsh, as to 
the amount of the subsidy desired by the Institute, the following sched- 
‘ule seems to have been prepared. There is nothing, however, to indicate 


136 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


that it was ever submitted to Congress. It is of interest as showing the 
state of expenditures contemplated for the National Museum nearly half 
a century ago: 


[Memorandum in Colonel Abert’s hand.] 


DEAR SiR: In answer to your inquiry of this morning as to the probable amount 
and the division of it which will be requisite to preserve and arrange the various 
articles of natural history belonging to the National Institute, I have the honor to 
submit the following views to your consideration : 


One taxidermist, who should also bea scientific ornithologist and well versed 


in natural history -penerally, per year: oc...) ivceuaNeeeenn oe eee $1, 400 
One assistant: «::..c.:.icie Squat ators als lek, ae oS 2 aol la ere arte ie tic an 600 
One entomologist, who should also be capable of arranging and naming the 

Weft: i. in 3 sms /simepemargagh aaepee Bae hes adis. oars) Ao eet pe I, 200 
Qne assistant .a<t |.sfcaet lap oan Haas ota dels Sie. «hla Oe ae 600 
One minerAlosist i 5s cr tinct ere es crags San eaters Nk are ee I, 000 
Otic assistant:-2 2.535. tees alt ee eons mote ees ae Te 500 
One person in special charge of the articles, to watch over them, exhibit 

them, ete, who should also, be a-meehatiie.: «sayeth fea ee 600 
Two laborers—these should be men of some intelligence and some ability 

in: using tools, $1 per day forsedelysd). ace is oes os oe ee eee 730 
Tools, implements, preserving liquors and ingredients, apparatus cases, and 

Other fixtures: see Asics ete svat ore Sareea ices ebeteratcnete te kee a a ene ence aire 2, 500 
Freight, postage, stationery, and other contingencies...................... I, 200 
Agrearares due for freight, postage, pribine 1eteys aac eniaer ee or etaereee s I, 500 

I1, 830 


Hon. Mr. Marsu, May 18, 1844, 
House of Representatives. 


Notwithstanding the extraordinary efforts at this time made and the 
favorable report of Senator Choate, Congress adjourned in the spring of 
1844 without making any provision for the care of the collections of the 
Institute. 

Another effort was made in 1845. Senator Levi Woodbury, president 
of the Institute, in the annual address delivered by him on January 
15 in the Hall of the House of Representatives, made a most impressive 
appeal to Congress. After urging prompt action in the matter of the 
Smithson trust—‘‘a trust so sacred and imperative thata longer delay to 
execute it might prove not a little derogatory to our national honor’’— 
he continued: 

Should the plan for this not be speedily matured, including the use of the Institute 
or its officers, then a grant at once of enough to defray the expenses attendant on 
the good preservation and collection of the public materials in our charge seems 
indispensable, and is believed also to be free from every doubt connected either with 
expediency or the Constitution, as many of the collections now belong to the Goy- 
ernment and all of them are vested in it when the charter expires, and may be forth- 
with if desirable. What small sum then is granted for this object by the Govern- 
ment is granted for taking care of its own property, the title of which is public, the 
one public, the whole end and aim public; and that act of duty done, we hope, by 
the further help of our own contributions, with those of liberal friends of science 


The Genesis of the United States Nationat Museum, — 137 


elsewhere, by the continued and generous assistance of the officers of the Army 
and Navy, of our foreign ministers and consuls, as well as the members of Congress 
and many in private life, I think it may be safely said we hope to advance still 
farther and faster, till we render the Institute, in many respects, worthy its unri- 
valed position and the growing country to which it belongs." 


This was followed up by a memorial to Congress, which, having never 
before been published, is here presented,’ and which was favorably acted 
upon by the Library Committee, who adopted the report submitted by 
Senator Choate concerning the similar memorial of 1844. No action was, 
however, taken. 

Still another appeal was made? to the Twenty-ninth Congress, which 
was presented to the Senate by Lewis Cass, and to the House of Repre- 
sentatives by John Quincy Adams. ‘This, too, was fruitless. 

In 1846 also, as we have seen, Mr. Ingersoll, always a faithful friend 
of the society, endeavored to establish a connection between it and the 
Smithsonian Institution in the administration of a National Museum, but 
the effort failed at the last moment, and the Regents of the Institution 
were not inclined to take advantage of the privilege of putting this 
building as a wing to the Patent Office, as they might have done. 

In the organization of the Smithsonian Institution the National Insti- 
tute was practically left out of account and the hopes of many years 
were blasted. What was still more discouraging was that power had been 
given to the new corporation to take possession of all Government collec- 
tions in the custody of the Institute, on the possession of which its chief 
claim to a subsidy was founded, and in connection with which a consid- 
erable debt had been contracted,‘ as is indicated by Mr. Rush’s letter of 
July, 1846. 

In the ‘‘ Notice to the members of the National Institute’’ which served 
as an introduction to its fourth bulletin, dated November 25, 1846, a 
pitiful statement of the condition of the society is given: 

More than a thousand boxes, barrels, trunks, etc., embracing collections of value, 
variety, and rarity in literature, in the arts, and in natural history, remain on hand 
unopened—the liberal contributions of members at home and abroad—of Govern- 
ments, of learned and scientific societies and institutions of foreign countries and 
of our own—and of munificent friends and patrons in every part of the world. For 
the preservation, reception, and display of these, the Institute has neither funds nor 
a suitable depository. 

This was a fatal condition of affairs, for the formation of a museum 
was the one object which, out of the many specified, seemed to have 
finally absorbed the energies and the limited income of the National 
Institute. 


* Annual address, pp. 33, 34- 2 Note E. 3 Note F. 


4 Colonel Abert estimated the amount in 1844 at $1,500 and it was now doubtless 
greater. 


5 Proceedings of the National Institute, 4th Bull., p. 481. 


138 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


It had evidently been the belief of itschief promoters that if a museum 
under the patronage of the Government and under the control of their 
society could be firmly established in Washington, all the other ends 
sought by them would follow in necessary sequence. 

In accordance with this policy circulars had been sent out to the offi- 
cers of the Army at distant ports asking their aid and pointing out the 
manner in which they might be useful in carrying out the objects of the 
Institution, ‘‘and others to the governors of States and to the diplomatic 
and consular representatives of the United States in foreign countries, 
announcing that they had been made corresponding members, and invit- 
ing their aid in the promotion of the objects of the Institution,’’ and to 
each member of Congress, with a request that he bring specimens of the 
natural productions of his district on his return to Washington." 


WASHINGTON, February 9, 1841. 


Str: The National Institution for the Promotion of Science and the Useful Arts, 
established at the seat of Government, is desirous of procuring specimens of the 
natural productions of every portion of the United States, and for that purpose 
respectfully asks your aid and cooperation. The district you represent doubtless 
possesses many important minerals and vegetable productions, which might prove 
of great value to the arts if they were generally made known. Specimens of such 
productions being brought to Washington will not only advance the objects of the 
Institution, but will prove advantageous to the country whence they come. They 
will be described by the scientific members of the Institution, and their uses and 
advantages pointed out, and the specimens exhibited to the public in its museum. 

You are respectfully requested to bring with you, on your return, such specimens 
as you may collect during the ensuing recess. Even a single specimen from each 
member will be of great advantage to the Institution, and be thankfully received as 
a tribute to science. 

We have the honor to be, sir, you most obedient servants, 

Je 2. BOINnNsEES 
J. K. PAULDING, 


Directors. 
To the Hon. 


The assumption by a society of the important duty of organizing and 
conducting a national museum would seem at the present time somwhat 
strange, but it should be remembered that from the beginning it was 
announced that all the collections made were the property of the General 
Government, and that in the incorporation of the society by Congress all 
the property of the corporation at the time of the expiration of its charter, 
limited to twenty years, should belong to and devolve upon the United 
States. Still more important a factor in the influence of the society was 
the character of its membership, which included most of the leading men 
in political, scientific, and literary circles, and had upon its list of officers 
and directors such names as that of John Tyler, President of the United 
States, and his Cabinet, an ex-Secretary of War, two leading Senators, 


‘Circular letter to members of Congress, 


Report of U. S, National Museum, 1897. Part Il. PLATE 19. 


CHARLES PATRICK DALY. 


The Genests of the United States National Museum. 139 


Levi Woodbury, Peter Force, Colonel J. J. Abert, Colonel J. G. Totten, 
and Lieutenant M. F. Maury, Rufus Choate, Abbott Lawrence, and 
A.D. Bache. Our Government functions were less centralized at that 
time, and the policy of allowing more scope to private effort in public 
matters was similar in this instance at least to that which prevails in 
Great Britain at the present time. It was not to have been expected, 
however, that its authority should have remained long unquestioned, 
and in the end its lot was that which very frequently befalls those who 
out of disinterestedness undertake, unasked, to forward the interest of 
others. Thus, as Rush aptly put it, the merit of the Institute was 
turned to its misfortune, and its ‘‘voluntary zeal’’ was thought totally 
unworthy of recognition. 

The various invitations to members of Congress, army and navy 
officers, consuls, and citizens to collect and send in materials had, how- 
ever, begun to bring in great quantities of material, and the inability 
to care for these properly was the cause of the appeals for Government 
aid, which, as time went on, grew more frequent and urgent till 1846, 
when discouragement took the place of anticipation, and the society 
fell into a condition of inactivity and apathy. 

The real cause of the decline of the National Institute was simple 
enough. Failing to secure grants of money from Congress, the society 
was overwhelmed by the deluge of museum materials which, in response 
to its enthusiastic and widely circulated appeals, came to it from all 
quarters of the world. The annual receipts from the assessment of 
members were insufficient to pay for the care of the collections, and 
although by virtue of the long term of its charter the collections were 
kept together until 1861, there was little science and little energy mani- 
fested in this administration. 

In the archives of the National Museum there are a number of unpub- 
lished papers which are of value as constituting a partial history of the 
collections during this period, and some of which appear to be worthy 
of permanent preservation are here presented. 

One of them possesses a melancholy interest of its own. It isa list 
of the active members of the National Institute in arrears for dues up 
to December 12, 1843. The delinquents were 168 in number, including 
nearly one-half of the names on the membership roll, and the total 
arrearage amounted to $1,300. No wonder that the managers were 
discouraged, for this sum represented a like deficit in the assets of the 
society, its only income being derived from membership fees. 

From this time on, as we have already seen, the society languished. 
In 1848 its cabinet was almost the only evidence of its existence. At 
that time, however, an effort was made to resuscitate it, which seems 
to have been partially successful. The coming in of a new Adminis- 
tration was in some degree beneficial, the President, Taylor, having 


140 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


accepted the position of patron of the society, and some members of the 
Cabinet proving to be friendly. 

About this time the society seems to have regained its control of the hall 
in the Patent Office, an apartment which now came to be known properly 
as The National Institute—a name which it retained until the hall was 
finally dismantled. 

A visitor to Washington at the time of the inauguration of Taylor, 
in 1849, has left a record of his impressions of the capital city—at that 
time still very crude and unfinished. ‘‘ All that meets the gaze in Wash- 
ington, except the Capitol and the Departments, seems temporary,’’ he 
wrote. ‘The city appears like the site of an encampment, as if it were 
more adapted for a bivouac than a home,’’ and then he goes on to 
describe some of the principal characteristics of the city: 


In the National Institution, like nearly all of our scientific and literary establish- 
ments, as yet in embryo, sea quadrupeds from the Arctic zone, birds of rare plumage, 
the coat in which Jackson fought at New Orleans, the rifle of an Indian chief, plants, 
fossils, shells and corals, mummies, trophies, busts, and relics, typify inadequately 
natural science and bold adventure. . . . The foundation of the long-delayed mon- 
ument to him of whom it has been so admirably said that ‘‘ Providence made him 
childless that his country might call him father,” the slowly rising walls of the 
Smithsonian Institution, the vacant panels of the rotunda, the sculptured deformi- 
ties on the eastern front of the Capitol, and the very coin, freshly minted from Cali- 
fornia gold, awaken that painful sense of the incomplete, or that almost perplexing 
consciousness of the new, the progressive, and the unattained which is peculiar to 
our country.* 


President Taylor placed in the custody of the Institute the Washing- 
ton relics, and some other hopeful things occurred. The members gained 
courage and proceeded to revise its constitution and by-laws, to vote to 
print a quarto volume annually to be entitled ‘‘’The Transactions of the 
National Institute,’’* and to memorialize Congress for financial aid, and 
to offer its services to the Government ‘‘as a referee in matters which 
involve scientific knowledge and investigation. ’’ 

In 1850, at the request of the Secretary of State, the Institute under- 
took .the appointment of the ‘‘Central Authority,’’ a committee of 
21 members to pass upon articles proposed to be sent to the World’s 
Fair of 1851 in London. 

The needs of the Institute in 1850, as summed up in the Secretary’s 
report, were not extravagant—a medium of publication, a curator and 
librarian, who were to be paid sufficient salaries to enable them to give 
a considerable portion of their time to the work, new bindings for the 
books, and more room for library and meetings.? 


*1849. Tuckerman, H.T. The Inauguration. The Southern Literary Messenger, 
XV, pp. 236-240. Richmond, April, 1849. 

2 This series was never begun. 

3None of these, however, were realized, save for a short time the publication of 
Proceedings in octavo in 1855-1857. 


The Genesis of the United States National Museum. I4I 


At this time there were twenty-seven paying members of the society, 
and its income was less than $150 yearly." 

Mr. C. F. Stansbury, the Secretary of the Institute, acted as its agent 
for the World’s Fair, and obtained there some specimens for its museum, 
and in 1856 others were received from the New York Exhibition. 

It would appear from the records of this time that there was still a 
Gallery of Curiosities in the Patent Office not in the custody of the 
National Institute.’ 

In 1854 the Commissioner of Patents, for many years vested with a 
measure of authority by the Library Committee, was given by Congress? 
the administration of the collections and authorized to employ keepers, 
and a trifling appropriation was made, to be expended under the Depart- 
ment of the Interior—an arrangement which continued for three subse- 
quent years. 

In 1857, the Smithsonian Institution having definitely accepted the 
responsibility of caring for the national collections, all the articles depos- 
ited with the National Institute were removed. In addition to these 
there were numerous objects directly under the control of the National 
Institute which the officers would not permit to be removed. ‘There was 
evidently still a lingering hope that Congress would make provision for 
the care of the collections. In this same year, 1858, another memorial 
was sent to Congress, asking for an appropriation for preserving the 
collections of objects of natural history intrusted to their care. ‘This was 
unfavorably reported upon by the Senate committee (see Bibliography, 
under Brown) and in the House was referred to the Committee on the 
District of Columbia, whose report showed that ‘‘the collections are now 
in the Smithsonian Institution.’’ 4 


"The following letter will serve to explain the nature of the ties by which a part 
at least of the members were held to the organization: 


SMITHSONIAN INSTITUTION, January 5, 1852. 


My DEAR SiR: I beg leave through you to thank the members of the National 
Institute for the honor they conferred upon me by my election as one of the vice- 
presidents, and to request that I may not be considered a candidate for reelection. 

I shall continue to be a member and hold myself responsible for my portion of the 
debt unavoidably incurred by the executive committee. It is my opinion that under 
its present organization the Institution can not advance the cause of American 
science, and that it may be productive of much evil. 


I remain, very truly, your friend and servant, 
JosEPH HENRY. 
PETER FORCE, Esq. 
P. S.—I think it would be best to appoint a committee to inquire into the state of 
the Institution, and to advise as to what is to be done, and how the debts which have 
been incurred are to be paid. i ice 


? Proceedings of the National Institute, new series, I, pp. 47, 48. 


3Act of August 4, Statutes, X, 552. 
4Rhees, Documents, p. 653. 


142 Memortal of George Brown Goode. 


Some of these were, it is true, but there was still a miscellaneous 
collection, including many valuable objects, in the hall of the Patent 
Office, and known as ‘‘the National Institute.’’ Of these a catalogue 
was published by Alfred Hunter in 1859." 

They were afterwards placed in some old cases in a passageway in the 
Patent Office, and many valuable specimens and books were destroyed or 
stolen, there being no one responsible for their safety.’ 

Professor Baird told the writer that the books and specimens were placed 
on top of some file cases in a basement corridor, near an outer door, and 
that a person with a cane could at any time dislodge an armful and carry 
them away without impediment. 

In 1861, shortly before the charter finally expired by limitation, the 
birds and insects were almost completely destroyed and the library reduced 
to broken sets of periodicals and transactions. Such as they were, they 
were delivered by the Secretary of the Interior to the Smithsonian Insti- 
tution.? 

This was the end of the National Institute and its efforts to found a 
national museum, the end of the National Cabinet of Curiosities, and of 
the National Gallery, except so far as it continued in the possession of the 
Washington relics and the Franklin press, exhibited in one of the halls 
of the Patent Office. 


THE SMITHSONIAN INSTITUTION AND THE NATIONAL CABINET OF CURIOSITIES. 


After ten years of discussion, a bill to incorporate the Smithsonian 
Institution received the approval of Congress and the President. The 
charter, in its final form, does not appear to have represented fairly the 
views of any one party, except that which favored the library and inci- 
dentally the museum. Several special provisions, not from our present 
point of view harmonious with the spirit of Smithson’s bequest, were 
eliminated, and the act as finally passed, while broad enough to admit 
upon the foundation almost any work for intellectual advancement, was 
fortunately expressed in such general terms as to allow a large share of 
liberty to the trustees or regents. 

The Smithsonian Institution has had upon its governing board many 
of the noblest and wisest of the men of the nation, and the Regents, to 
whom, during the first four years of its corporate existence, the decision 
of its policy and its future tendencies was intrusted, were chosen from 
among the very best of those at that time in public life. 


*Hunter’s Bibliography. 

2It is said that some enlightened Commissioner of Patents, in power between 
1850 and 1860, was annoyed by the presence of a collection of fossil vertebrates in 
one of the rooms in his building, and without consulting anyone sent them to a 
bone mill in Georgetown, where they were transformed into commercial fertilizers— 
once for thought, they now became food for the farmers’ crops. 

3Smithsonian Report, 1862, p, 16. 


Report of U. S, National Museum, 1897. Part Il. PLATE 20. 


The Genests of the United States National Museum. 143 


Among them were George M. Dallas, the first chancellor, at that time 
Vice-President of the United States; Chief Justice Taney; Rufus 
Choate, of Massachusetts; Robert Dale Owen, of Indiana; George P. 
Marsh, of Vermont; Lewis Cass, of Michigan; Jefferson Davis, of Mis- 
sissippi; James A. Pearce, of Montana; James M. Mason and William 
Winston Seaton, of Virginia; John McPherson Berrien, of Georgia; 
William C. Preston, of South Carolina; William J. Hough, of New York; 
Alexander Dallas Bache, Superintendent of the Coast Survey, and Gen- 
eral Joseph G. Totten. 

The Regents soon realized that in order to carry out efficiently the 
trust which had devolved upon them, it would be necessary to decide 
upon a definite course of policy, and to settle for themselves the inter- 
pretation of certain of the provisions in the act of incorporation. 

A committee was appointed at once to digest a plan to carry out the 
provisions of the ‘‘Act to establish the Smithsonian Institution,’’ and on 
_ January 25, 1847, this report was made, signed by Robert Dale Owen, 
Henry W. Hilliard, Rufus Choate, and Alexander Dallas Bache, after 
having made a preliminary report December 1, which was recomimitted 
to the committee December 21. 

These dates are mentioned in order to afford opportunity for the remark 
that in the interval between December 1 and December 21, Professor 
Joseph Henry had been elected to and accepted the secretaryship of the 
Institution, and that previous to his election he had submitted to the 
Regents a sketch of a proposed plan of organization, which appears to 
have been acceptable to the majority of the Board, and that in this sketch 
were printed opinions which had from that time on a most powerful, and 
in time a controlling, influence upon the policy of the Institution.’ 

The election of Professor Henry was in accordance with the view held 
by the Regents, and expressed in the report of the committee, and even 
more forcibly in the resolutions of the Board, that the Secretary must of 
necessity become the chief executive officer of the Institution, and ‘‘ that 
upon the choice of this single officer, more probably than on any one 
other act of the Board, will depend the future good name and success 
and usefulness of the Smithsonian Institution.’’’ 


*At a meeting of the Joint Committee on Public Buildings and Grounds in Febru- 
ary, 1865, Professor Henry said: ‘‘I have been from the first, now eighteen years, the 
secretary or executive officer of the Smithsonian Institution. . . . Before my elec- 
tion I was requested by one of the Regents to give a sketch of what, in accordance 
with the will of Smithson, I considered should be the plan of organization, and after 
due consideration of the subject there was not the least shadow of a doubt in my mind 
that the intention of the donor was to found a cosmopolitan institution, the effects of 
which should not be confined to one city, or even to one country, but should be 
extended to the whole civilized world.”’ (Rep. Com., No. 129, Thirty-eighth Con- 
gress, second session. ) 

? Report of the Organization Committee of the Smithsonian Institution, ete. Wash- 

-ington, 1847, pp. 18, 19. [Rhees, Documents, p. 941. ] 


144 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


The choice of Professor Henry was by no means the unanimous act of 
the Regents, and since in respéct to personal qualifications he undoubtedly 
fulfilled the requirements of the resolution passed by the Board previous 
to the election of a Secretary, it is clear that some of the Regents did not 
look with favor upon his plan of organization. 

Of the 12 votes cast at the election December 3, 1846, 7 were in favor 
of Professor Henry, and 5 for persons who had been officers of the old 
National Institute, and closely associated with its policy. 

A bare majority—for the change of one vote would have made a tie— 
then placed itself on the side of the Henry policy. In its report the 
committee on organization speaks plainly of ‘‘two great conflicting opin-. 
ions’’ in the Board, for the harmonizing of which the ‘‘compromise’’ so 
often referred to during the struggle of the following six years. 

One party was in favor of devoting the larger part of the income to 
the library and museum. 

The other party favored rather the publication of scientific memoirs, 
grants for the promotion of original researches, and the maintenance of 
a lecture system.* : 

The ‘‘compromise’’ consisted in the division of the annual income into 
two nearly equal parts, to be applied to the two classes of expenditures, 
$15,000 to library and museum and the remainder ($15,910) to publica- 
tion, research, and lectures.’ : 

On one subject, however, the Regents seem to have been unanimous, 
and to have given their opinion in the following resolution: 

Resolved, That it is the intention of the act of Congress and in accordance with 
the design of Mr. Smithson, as expressed in his will, that one of the principal modes 
of executing the act and the trust is the accumulation of collections of specimens and 
objects of natural history3 and of elegant art, and the gradual formation of a library 
of valuable works pertaining to all departments of human knowledge, to the end that 
a copious storehouse of materials of science, literature, and art, may be provided, 
which shall excite and diffuse the love of learning among men, and shall assist the 


original investigations and efforts of those who may devote themselves to the pursuit 
of any branch of knowledge. 


The great building which, by the terms of this charter, the Smith- 
sonian Regents were requested to erect and pay for was to be ‘‘of suffi- 
cient size and with suitable rooms or halls for the reception and arrange- 
ment upon a liberal scale of objects of natural history, including a 


*To the library and museum party belonged, without doubt, Senator Choate, Mr. 
Owen, and probably Mr. Rush and General Totten, who were both devoted to the 
interests of the National Institute. Mr. Bache was, I suppose, the leader of the 
opposition. 

?Report of Committee on Organization, p. 21. [Documents, p. 942. ] 

3In this resolution for the first time the term ‘‘ natural history’’ is given its proper 
scope, as including not only zoology and botany, but geology, mineralogy, and eth- 
nology, although in the report of the committee a distinction seems to have been 
made, probably for the purpose of better definition. 

4Report of Committee on Organization, p. 20. [Documents, p. 942. ] 


The Genests of the United States National Museum. 145 


geological and mineralogical cabinet, a chemical laboratory, a library, a 
gallery of art, and the necessary lecture rooms;’’ and this was coupled 
with the accompanying provision, that, ‘‘in proportion as_ suitable 
arrangements can be made for their reception,’’ all objects suitable for a 
museum or gallery of art which the United States at any time might 
possess shall be delivered to the Regents and shall be arranged in the 
building. 

The national collections then existing and those afterwards to accumu- 
late were thus transferred to the governing board of the Smithsonian 
Institution as a contribution from the United States to the resources of 
the Institution, and were evidently intended in a certain way to counter- 
balance the gift of James Smithson for the same purpose. 

The intention of Congress is evident, and the law was almost manda- 
tory in character. ‘There was one phrase in the law, however, which gave 
opportunity for adjustment of terms. 

The provision that the delivery of these objects should take place ‘‘in 
proportion as suitable arrangements could be made for their reception,”’ 
was, it may be, intended to give the Institution time for careful and 
thorough preparation. ‘This placed no limit upon the time for completing 
the buildings, and indeed gave to the Board of Regents the right to indi- 
cate the time when ‘‘suitable arrangements’’ could be made. 

It was undoubtedly the wish of the members of the Twenty-ninth Con- 
gress that the expense and responsibility of organizing and maintaining 
a national museum should be transferred forever to the Smithsonian Insti- 
tution, and it was quite far from their intention that the public Treasury 
should ever be called upon for aid. 

Not only the National Museum, the National Library, and a national 
chemical laboratory were thus assigned, but also the expense of keeping 
up the previously neglected public park in which the Smithsonian build- 
ings were to be erected. It was only by accident that a national observa- 
tory and an institution corresponding to the present Department of 
Agriculture were not added to the burden. 

That was the day of small beginnings. ‘The theory of our form of 
government had not been settled in the minds of our public men, and 
every new project brought up for discussion in Congress became the sub- 
ject of long and tortuous discussions. ‘There were Congressmen who ten 
years after the acceptance of the Smithson legacy were in favor of return- 
ing the money to England to be given to any one who could legally take 
it, while Andrew Johnson, of Tennessee, in 1845, endeavored to over- 
throw what had already been established and to substitute a ‘‘ Washington 
University for the benefit of the indigent children of the District of Colum- 
bia, in memory of and out of respect to George Washington, the Father 
of his Country.’’’ 


*Rhees, Documents, p. 489. 


NAT MUS 97, PT 2 IO 


¢ 


146 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


The will of the Twenty-ninth Congress was not necessarily that of 
the Thirtieth. Mr. Hilliard, of Alabama, made a bold and successful 
stroke for the independence of the Board of Regents, and defeated a 
motion to appoint a regular Congressional committee to supervise and 
report upon their proceedings. This was a step toward securing the 
recognition of the right of the Regents to interpret for themselves the 
true meaning of the charter. 

The next Congress was still less disposed to exercise a minute system 
of control, and the Regents, through Senator Jefferson Davis, boldly 
asserted that it was ‘‘improper for Congress to interfere with the adminis- 
tration of a fund which it has confided to a Board of Regents not entirely 
formed of members of Congress and not responsible to it.’’* 

The attitude of Professor Henry from the beginning to the end of the 
thirty-one years of his secretaryship was singularly independent and out- 
spoken. Having before his election submitted to the Board of Regents 
a plan of organization which met with their approbation, he was elected 
with the understanding that he was to carry this plan into effect. 

He was from the beginning in a certain way the authorized interpreter 
of the Smithsonian bequest, and, as everyone knows who has studied 
the history of the Institution, his earnest and steadfast policy and the 
wonderful clearness and force with which he explained his views, sup- 
ported by his scientific eminence and his grandeur of character, gave 
him a wonderful influence with the successive bodies of men who acted 
as regents. 

His influence from the very start was on the side of publication and 
original research and in opposition to constant expenditure of what in 
time he began to designate as ‘‘local objects.’’ 

His attitude toward museum and library, especially the former, was at 
first a noncommital one. He proceeded slowly, evidently not from lack 
of courage, but with the methods of a man of science, studying the 
results of different courses of policy, and, when he expressed an opinion, 


.s speaking from the standpoint of experience. 


The history of the National Institution and its fate, hopelessly involved 
and crushed to death by the weight of the collections and books which 
had been given or lent to it, was constantly brought to his mind, for 
the Institution was expected to take up this burden, with the prospect 
of unlimited additions to its weight, and to bear it alone and perhaps 
forever. 

To him, and to the Regents also, it must have been evident that this 
burden once assumed, the fate of the Smithsonian Institution would 
eventually be similar to that of the National Institute. - 

More directly threatening was the evil of the immediate absorption of 
a large part of the income, to the detriment of the plans which seeined 
to him more likely to accomplish the wishes of the Institution. 


*Rhees, Documents, p. 509. 


Report of U. S. National Museum, 1897, Part Il PLATE 21. 


CHARLES HENRY DAVIS. 


md 
VON tas 


The Genests of the United States National Museum. 147 


The wisdom of Professor Henry’s policy has been almost universally 
conceded, and the success with which for thirty-one years he directed 
the resources of the Institution toward the increase and diffusion of 
knowledge compels the admiration of everyone who studies the history 
of his life in connection with that of the Institution, and had done so 
for many years before his death. 

It is now evident that but for his conservative policy the history of the 
Institution would have been comparatively insignificant. 

In the light of subsequent events, it is safe to assert that in all proba- 
bility had the Smithsonian Institution taken charge of the ‘‘ National 
Museum’’ in the manner proposed in 1846, the result would have been 
even more detrimental to the Museum than to the Institution. 

It did not seem so at the time, however, and for ten years the course 
of the Institution was under the subject of criticism of a very serious 
kind. 

It is of course not essential to review at length the discussions which 
took place within the first ten years between the officers of the Institu- 
tion, in the meetings of the Regents, in Congress, and in the public 
journals as to the authority of the Board of Regents and the Secretary to 
deviate from a strict interpretation of the act of incorporation, which was 
presumed to embody the will of Congress. There was a party who was 
of the opinion that a large part of the income should be devoted to the 
accumulation of a great general library and who fought boldly in defense 
of this project. The conflict culminated in 1856 with the dismissal of 
the librarian by Professor Henry, a Congressional investigation, and the 
resignation of two of the most active Regents. The Board upheld the 
Secretary, and successfully maintained, both in House and Senate, the 
position that they as trustees of the Smithson bequest were not amenable 
to the advice or instructions of Congress and were the only authorities 
qualified to interpret the meaning of the act of incorporation and the 
intention of Smithson, the founder. 

The immediate cause of this final outbreak was the repeal, in 1855, of 
the resolution passed in 1846 dividing the income of the Institution into 
two nearly equal parts for two specific objects, the advocates of a great 
library being of the opinion that the spirit of this resolution had not been 
regarded. 

The resignation of Senator Choate and Mr. Meacham and the unquali- 
fied indorsement of the Secretary by the other members of the Board 
greatly strengthened his position and enabled him to cope more success- 
fully with the question of the admission of the Government museum to 
the Smithsonian buildings, for the transfer provided for in 1846 had not 
up to 1856 been definitely arranged for. 

The history of the treatment of this matter is very important, since it 
leads up to the origin of the present relationship existing between the 
’ Government, the National Museum, and the Smithsonian Institution. 


148 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


The delay in the completion of the Smithsonian buildings afforded to 
the Regents an opportunity for a gradual development of the plan of 
organization. Until the building should have been furnished the resolu- 
tion giving half of the income to library and museum was not obligatory, 
nor was it possible for the custody of the Government museum to be 
finally transferred. 

The corner stone was laid May 1, 1847, but the work was in progress 
until 1855. The delay was evidently intentional, for in [September 27] 
1848 Professor Henry, in an exposition of Smithson’s bequest before 
the New Jersey Historical Society, spoke as follows: 

He regretted that in order to make provision for the accommodation of the Museum 
of the Exploring Expedition, as directed by the act of Congress, so large an amount 
of money was required for the erection of the buildings. The evil, however, which 
would result from this is in a measure obviated by the plan proposed by Professor 
Bache, and adopted by the Regents, viz, that of deferring the time of completing the 
building, so that it might be erected in considerable part by means of the interest 


of $240,000, which had accrued in interest on the original fund, previous to the 
year 1846.% 


As early as 1847 Professor Henry seems to have entertained the hope 
of escape from the full acceptance of the terms of the charter, for in his 
first plans, as finally submitted to the Regents, he expressed the hope 
‘that in due time other means may be found of establishing and support- 
ing a general collection of objects of nature and art at the seat of the 
general government, with funds not derived from the Smithsonian 
bequest.’ * 

In the report for the year 1849, presented in 1850, Professor Henry 
gave the result of his later observations and reflections, and for the first 
time took his stand in opposition to the transfer, advancing the theory 
that it was not obligatory on the Regents to take charge of the Govern- 
ment collections. He wrote: 


This law evidently gives to the Smithsonian Institution the museum in the Patent 
Office, the conservatory of plants, and all specimens of nature and art to be found 
in the several offices and departments of the Government. The act, however, can 
not be construed as rendering it obligatory on the Regents to take charge of these 
articles, if, in their opinion, it is not for the best interests of the Institution that they 
should do so. Though one of the reasons urged upon the Regents for the immedi- 
ate erection of so large a building was the necessity of providing accommodation for 
this museum, I have been, from the first, of the opinion that it was inexpedient to 
accept it. 

This museum was collected at the expense of the Government, and should be pre- 
served as a memento of the science and energy of our Navy, and asa means of 
illustrating and verifying the magnificent volumes which comprise the history of 
that expedition. If the Regents accept this museum, it must be merged in the 
Smithsonian collections. It could not be the intention of Congress that an Institu- 
tion founded by the liberality of a foreigner, and to which he has affixed his own 
name, should be charged with the keeping of a separate museum, the property of 


*Henry, Smithson’s Bequest, p. 8. 
2Second_Report for 1847, p.184 [reprinted as First Report in Report for 1853, 
p- 139]; Rhees, Documents, p. 958. 


The Genests of the United States National Museum. 149 


the United States. Besides this, the extensive museum of the Patent Office would 
immediately fill the space allotted for collections of this kind in the Smithsonian 
edifice, and in a short time another appropriation would be required for the erection 
of another building. Moreover, all the objects of interest of this collection have 
been described and figured in the volumes of the expedition, and the small portion 
of our funds which can be devoted to a museum may be better employed in collect- 
ing new objects, such as have not yet been studied, than in preserving those from 
which the harvest of discovery has already been fully gathered. 

The answer made to some of these objections has usually been, that the Govern- 
ment would grant an annual appropriation for the support of the museum of the 
Exploring Expedition. But this would be equally objectionable; since it would 
annually bring the Institution before Congress as a supplicant for Government 
patronage, and ultimately subject it to political influence and control. 

After an experience of three years, I am fully convinced that the true policy of the 
Institution is to ask nothing from Congress except the safe-keeping of its funds, to 
mingle its operations as little as possible with those of the General Government, and 
to adhere in all cases to its own distinct organization, while it cooperates with other 
institutions in the way of promoting knowledge; and on the other hand, that it is 
desirable that Congress should place as few restrictions on the Institution as possi- 
ble consistent with a judicious expenditure of the income, and that this be judged 
of by a proper estimate of the results produced. 


The Regents and their Secretary were in harmony. 

In the Senate, April 15, 1850, the discussion of the bill for the com- 
pletion of the Patent Office building elicited the following statement from 
Senator Jefferson Davis: 


What the wants of the Patent Office are now is one thing, and what those wants 
will be in a few years is another, and an entirely different thing. Not only from the 
report of the last Commissioner of Patents, but from inspection, if anyone choose to 
make it, and see the condition of things in that department, I think it may be denied 
that there is room enough in the present building for the wants of the department. 
If I understand the report of the present Commissioner of Patents or the Secretary 
of the Interior, the argument against the want of further room by the Patent Depart- 
ment is based upon the supposition that all which now belongs to the National Insti- 
tute, all connected with the exploring expedition which now fills the museum of the 
Patent Office, is to be transferred to the Smithsonian Institution. That seems to be 
the basis of the conclusion. Now, sir, I wish to state to the Senate that Congress 
has no power to impose upon that Institution the duty of taking charge of this col- 
lection of the exploring expedition—we may infer from their act—nor did they ever 
intend todo so. They gave to that Institution the right to take all such curiosities 
brought home by the exploring expedition, as might be desired for that Institution, 
and I will inform the Senate that it is not the intention of the present Board of 
Regents of the Smithsonian Institution to take charge of the museum of the Patent 
Office, and the room appropriated to these curiosities will be required hereafter as 
now.* 

By its action in directing at this time the enlargement of the Patent 
Office, Congress appears to have accepted the ideas of Senator Davis, or, 
as Professor Henry expressed it, ‘‘concurred in the opinions expressed 
in the Senate by the Hon. Jefferson Davis, that it was a gift which ought 


not to be pressed upon the Institution.’’? 


- *Rhees, Documents, p. 505. 
The National Museum, although the designation proposed in Mr. Ingersoll’s 
amendment to the Owen bill for the Smithsonian Institution was never legally sanc- 


150 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


In his report for 1851, Professor Henry, sure of his position, spoke 
still more boldly. ‘‘It is to be regretted,’’ said he, ‘‘that Congress did 
not leave the entire choice of the plan of organization to those who were 
to be intrusted with the management of the bequest.’’ 

These plain words were called forth by the fact that the building was 
still unfinished, and that a large additional appropriation from the fund 
was required to make it ready for occupation. 

It is worth while to remember that his previous impressions of museums, 
or at least of recent years, had doubtless been founded upon the cabinet 
in the National Institute, which, before Professor Henry came to Wash- 
ington, had become completely torpid. Its collections, housed in a hall 
not under its control, belonged to it only in name. ‘The miscellaneous 
assemblage of specimens in the hall of the Patent Office had been well 
described in the Smithsonian charter by the name ‘‘ National Cabinet of 
Curiosities,’’ for it did not deserve to be called a museum. 

Professor Henry evidently had that in mind in protesting against ‘‘a 
promiscuous collection,’’ but for the first time explains that he does not 
underrate ‘‘the (scientific) importance of collections in themselves.’’ 

The following quotation will show, however, that he was not so averse 
to the museum idea as he had formerly been, although very doubtful as 
to the advisability of accepting aid from Congress: 

The museum is to consist, according to the law of Congress, and the terms of the 
compromise, of ‘‘objects of art, of foreign and curious research, and of natural his- 
tory, of plants and geological and mineralogical specimens.’’ It would, however, 
be unwise in the Institution to attempt the formation of full collections of all these 
objects, or, in other words, to form an establishment similar to that of the British 
Museum. ‘The whole income devoted to this object would be entirely inadequate. 
The portion of the main building appropriated to the museum consists of a single 
room, two hundred feet long by fifty feet wide. This space may be entirely filled in 
the course of three years, without the purchase of a single article, if the means be 
adopted which present themselves at the seat of government for making collections. 
But when this space is filled, the accumulation of specimens must cease, or an addi- 
tion be made to the building, which, to harmonize with the present edifice, would 
involve a large expenditure. The question then arises, from what source is this 
money to be obtained? It can not be derived from the annual income of the capital, 
for this would cripple the more important operations. It may be said that Congress 
will furnish the means; but this is relying on a very uncertain source, and the policy 
of applying to Congress for any aid is doubtful. 

Having said this much, it was easy to continue by expressing the opinion 
that the Regents had been in error in supposing it necessary to put up a 
building for the reception of the great museum of the exploring expedition 
presented by Congress. 


tioned, was understood to be under the charge of the Smithsonian from the time of 
its incorporation. ‘The museum clauses of the charter were so understood by the 
first Regents and by Professor Henry, who, in his first programme of organization, in 
1847, wrote: ‘‘When the building is completed, and when, in accordance with the 
act of Congress, the charge of the National Museum is given to the Smithsonian 
Institution, other assistants will be required.”’ 


Report of U. S. National Museum, 1897. Part Il. PLATE 22. 


EDWIN HAMILTON DAVIS. 


nae s 
TAt 7 ~ 


The Genests of the United States National Museum. 15° 


. The next year made some change in the views of Professor Henry. ‘The 
presence of his new assistant secretary, Professor Baird, and the evidence 
of the collection that was now growing up under his own eyes, that 
museums may be made important agencies for scientific discovery, had 
perhaps increased his personal interest in such matters. 

And again: 


Though the formation of a general collection is neither within the means nor 
province of the Institution, it is an object which ought to engage the attention of 
Congress. A general museum appears to be a necessary establishment at the seat 
of government of every civilized nation. . . . Indeed the government has already 
formed the nucleus of such a museum in the collections now in the Patent Office. 

An establishment of this kind can only be supported by government; and the 
proposition ought never to be encouraged of putting this duty on the limited, though 
liberal bequest of a foreigner. 

The Smithsonian Institution will readily take the supervision of an establishment 
of this kind, and give plans for its organization and arrangement, provided it be 
requested to do so, and the means for effecting the object be liberally supplied.* 


In the report for the year 1852 Professor Henry definitely stated that 
the Regents had concluded that it was not advisable to take charge of the 
great museum of the exploring expedition,’ and also expressed the hopeful 
opinion that ‘‘there can be but little doubt, that in due time, ample pro- 
vision will be made for a library and museum at the capital of this Union 
worthy of a Government whose perpetuity depends upon the virtue and 
intelligence of the people.’’ 3 

In the report for the year 1853, presented January 14—March 11, 1854, 
another step toward the transfer of the museum is chronicled. The Secre- 
tary wrote: 

I have been informed by the Commissioner of Patents that the space now occu- 
pied in the building of the Patent Office by the National Museum, issimperatively 
required for the display of models; and he suggests that a part or the whole of the 
Smithsonian building shall be purchased for the deposit of this collection. If Con- 
gress will entirely relieve the Smithsonian fund from the expense of collecting and 
maintaining a museum, a large portion of the present building would be unneces- 
sary, and the proposition to purchase a part or the whole of it might properly be 
entertained. The Smithsonian Institution, if required, would take the supervision 
of a government museum, and would turn over to it all the specimens collected 
after they had been examined and described. The importance of a collection at the 
seat of government to illustrate the physical geography, natural history, and eth- 
nology of the United States, can not be too highly estimated. But the support of 
such a collection ought not to be a burthen upon the Smithsonian fund.4 


The year 1854 was the stirring one in the history of the Institution, 
and little was done toward the transfer of the museum. The great lower 
hall, having been completed, was lying idle. The Smithsonian collec- 
tions were rapidly increasing under the management of Professor Baird, 


*Report for 1851, p. 25. [Reprinted in Report for 1853, p. 227.] 
?Sixth Annual Report, p. 252. 

3Idem, p. 253. 

4Eighth Annual Report, p. I1. 


152 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


of whose work in this direction more will be said later, and a considera- 
ble number of Government collections had come directly into the custody 
of the Institution—in bulk and value more extensive than those in the 
Patent Office, those of the exploring expedition excepted. 

In this year, too, the custody of the Patent Office collection was 
transferred to the Commissioner of Patents, and an appropfiation made 
for their support. 

In 1855, in his report, presented March 1, 1856, the Secretary said: 

The lower story of the main building consists of one large hall to be appropriated 
to a museum or library. It is at present unoccupied, but will be brought into use 


as soon as the means are provided for furnishing it with proper cases for containing 
the objects to which it may be appropriated." 


In another place he expressed the hope that Congress would in due 
time relieve the Institution from the support of the building, and ulti- 
mately appropriate the greater part of it to a national museum.? 

This was the first time that the term National Museum was publicly 
used by Professor Henry or in the reports of the Smithsonian Institu- 
tion—a significant fact, and one which shows a step in the progress of 
the museum idea and a revival of the plan promoted by the National 
Institute from 1840 to 1846. 

The fact that the Smithsonian museum, in itself, could now claim to 
be the best general collection of natural history so far as North America 
was concerned probably stimulated the Secretary’s enthusiasm, for he 
announced the fact in the report with evident pride. 

In March, 1856, the subject of the removal of the collections from the 
Patent Office was presented to the Regents by the Secretary, but the 
minutes contain no record of their decision. 

In the Secretary’s report for 1856, presented to the Regents January 
26-28, 1857, the matter came up again for remark, and Professor Henry, 
as was his custom, spoke of the obstacles to the progress of the Institu- 
tion caused by the restriction of the charter, and recurring to the museum, 
said: 

The adverse effects of the early and consequently imperfect legislation ought, 
therefore, as far as possible, to be obviated; and this could readily be done, if Con- 
gress would relieve the Institution from the care of a large collection of specimens 
principally belonging to the government, and purchase the building to be used as a 
depository of all the objects of natural history and the fine arts belonging to the 
nation. If this were done, a few rooms would be sufficient for transacting the busi- 
ness of the Institution, and a large portion of the income would be free to be applied 
to the more immediate objects of the bequest. Indeed, it would be a gain to science 
could the Institution give away the building for no other consideration than that of 
being relieved from the costly charge of the collections; and, for the present, it may 
be well to adopt the plan suggested in a late report of the Commissioner of Patents, 
namely, to remove the museum of the Exploring Expedition, which now fillsa large 
and valuable room in the Patent Office, wanted for the exhibition of models, to the 
spacious hall of the Institution, at present unoccupied, and to continue under the 


‘Smithsonian Report, 1855, p. 15. * Idem, p. 16, 


The. Genests of the United States National Museum. 153 


direction of the Regents, the appropriation now annually, made for the preservation 
and display of the collections. 

Although the Regents, a few years ago, declined to accept this museum as.a gift, 
yet, since experience has shown that the building will ultimately be filled with 
objects of natural history belonging to the general government, which, for the 
good of science, it will be necessary to preserve, it may be a question whether, in con- 
sideration of this fact, it would not be well to offer the use of the large room imme- 
diately for a national museum, of which the Smithsonian Institution would be the 
mere curator, and the expense of maintaining which should be paid by the general 
government. Thecost of keeping the museum of the Exploring Expedition, now in 
the Patent Office, including heating, pay of watchmen, etc., is about $5,000, and if 
the plan proposed is adopted, the Institution and the Patent Office will both be ben- 
efited. The burden which is now thrown on the Institution, of preserving the 
specimens which have been collected by the different expeditions instituted by 
government during the last ten years, will be at least in part removed, and the 
Patent Office will acquire the occupancy of one of the largest rooms in its building 
for the legitimate purposes of its establishment. It is believed that the benefit from 
this plan is so obvious that no objection to it would be made in Congress, and that 
it would meet the approbation of the public generally." 


I can find no record in the minutes of the Regents, but have been 
informed by Mr. W. J. Rhees, of the Smithsonian Institution, that an 
urgent request for the use of the hall was made by the Commissioner of 
Patents and the Secretary of the Interior, and that the Board decided to 
grant this request on the condition that Congress should appropriate 
money for the construction of the cases and the transfer of the collec- 
tions, and that the Secretary of the Interior should provide for the expenses 
of the care of the collections after their transfer in the same manner as 
before. 

The question of the legality of the transfer of the collections was sub- 
mitted by the Secretary of the Interior to the Attorney-General, by whom 
it was held that the provision in the eighth section of the act of August 
4, 1854 (10 Stats., 572), placing the collections under the control of the 
Commissioner of Patents, and authorizing the employment by him of 
keepers therefor, was designed to be temporary only, and that the act 
establishing the Smithsonian Institution, as well as that making the 
appropriation in 1857, were to be regarded as indicating the purpose of 
Congress respecting permanent provision for these collections.’ 

The appropriation of 1857, referred to by the Attorney-General, was 
one giving $15,000 for the construction of cases and $2,000 for the 
removal of the collections. (March 3, 1857; 11 Stats., 219.) 

In commenting upon this action, Professor Henry, in his report for 
1857, remarked : 

At the last session of Congress an appropriation was made for the construction 


and erection of cases to receive the collections of the United States Exploring Expe- 
dition and others in Washington, and also for the transfer and arrangement of the 


* Smithsonian Report, 1856, pp. 21, 22. 
? Letter of Hon. William F. Vilas, Secretary of the Interior, to the Secretary of the 
Smithsonian Institution. 


154 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


specimens. ‘This appropriation was granted in accordance with the recommendation 
of the late Secretary of the Interior and the Commissioner of Patents, in order that 
the large room in the Patent Office occupied by the museum might be used for the 
more legitimate purposes of that establishment. We presume that the other part of 
the recommendation will also be carried out, namely, that the annual appropriation 
be continued which has heretofore been made for the care of this portion of the Goy- 
ernment property. While, on the one hand, no appropriation should be made which 
would serve to lessen the distinctive character of Smithson’s bequest, on the other it 
is evident that the government should not impose any burdens upon the Institution 
which would impair its usefulness or divert its funds from their legitimate purpose.* 


In 1853, by the act of June 2 (11 Stats., 301), am appropriation of 
$4,000, ‘‘for the preservation of the collection of the exploring and sur- 
veying expeditions of the Government,’’ was made as a contingent 
expense in the office of the Secretary of the Interior. 

The management of this appropriation and of all which followed it 
from year to year was always placed entirely in the hands of the Secre- 
tary of the Smithsonian Institution. 

In the report for 1858 Professor Henry gave the following concise his- 
tory of the relations of the Smithsonian Institution to the national col- 
lections: 


It will be recollected that by the law of Congress incorporating this Institution 
‘Call objects of art and of foreign and curious research, and all objects of natural 
history, plants, and geological and mineralogical specimens belonging to or hereafter 
to belong to the United States which may be in the city of Washington, in whoseso- 
ever custody the same may be, shall be delivered to such persons as may be author- 
ized by the Board of Regents to receive them.” 

The law thus giving to the Smithsonian Institution all specimens illustrative of 
nature and art to be found in the several offices and departments of government was 
not construed as rendering it obligatory on the Regents to accept these objects if 
they considered it expedient todoso, Inasmuch, then, as this collection was neither 
essential to the plan of organization nor directly subservient to the comprehensive 
purpose of the donor in regard to a world-wide benefit, it was the ultimate decision 
of a majority of the Board that it ought not to be accepted and that no part of the 
donation ought to be expended in the care of property belonging to the government 
of the United States. 

Previous to the discussion of this question it had been assumed that the Regents 
were under an obligation to take charge of the museum, and, on this account prin- 
cipally, a large and expensive building had been thought necessary. After it was 
settled, however, that the Regents were not bound to accept this trust, the work of 
construction was carried on more slowly, with a view at once to secure certain 
advantages to the building itself, and to increase the principal by funding the interest 
of the money which would be absorbed by its completion. 

In the meantime a very large amount of specimens of natural history had accumu- 
lated at the Institution from numerous exploring parties sent out by the general 
government; and as these collections had been made under the direction of the 
Institution, and their preservation was of the highest importance to the natural 
history of the country, it was finally concluded that if Congress would make an 
appropriation for the transfer and new arrangement of the articles then in the Patent 
Office, and continue the annual appropriation previously made for their care and 


— 


* Smithsonian Report, 1857, p. 14. 


Report of U. S. National Museum, 1897. Part Il. PLATE 23. 


JOHN WILLIAM DRAPER. 


The Genesis of the United States National Museum. 155 


exhibition while in charge of the Commissioner of Patents, the Institution would, 
under these conditions, become the curator of the national collections. ‘This propo- 
sition was agreed to by the government, and the contemplated transfer has accord- 
ingly been made. 

It is believed that this arrangement will be mutually beneficial to the Patent Office 
and the Institution, since the former will be relieved from a duty scarcely compatible 
with the design of its establishment, and will gain possession of one of the largest 
rooms in the city for the exhibition of a class of models to which the public have not 
previously had ready access; while the Smithsonian Institution will be able to pre- 
sent to the strangers who visit Washington a greater number of objects of interest, 
and appropriate that portion of the large building not required for its own most 
important operations to a useful purpose. 

The cost of keeping the collections at the Patent Office, including fuel, was about 
$4,000 annually, but the Regents might with justice have asked for an additional 
amount sufficient to pay the interest on the cost of that portion of the edifice occu- 
pied by the museum. It was, however, thought more prudent to restrict the appli- 
cation to the sum above mentioned, and to request that the appropriation might be 
continued under the charge of the Secretary of the Interior, thus obviating the 
necessity of an annual application to Congress by the Institution itself. 

The cases at present required for the accommodation of the collections have been 
constructed at a cost within the appropriation made for that purpose; and the Insti- 
tution is indebted to Hon. J. Thompson, Secretary of the Interior, and Hon. J. Holt, 
Commissioner of Patents, for the use of glass sash and shelving no longer needed 
in the room which formerly contained the museum in the Patent Office, but which 
have been applied to good purpose in supplying deficiencies in the Smithsonian 
building. The Regents are also indebted to Thomas U. Walter, esq., architect of the 
United States Capitol extension, for the beautiful design of the cases, and to Edward 
Clark, esq., architect of the Interior Department, for the inspection of the work dur- 
ing its progress and the examination of the accounts presented by the contractor. 

In order to increase the capacity of the large room appropriated to the collection, 
the cases have been arranged in two stories, forming a series of alcoves, and a gal- 
lery on each side. By the adoption of this plan space can be provided for double 
the number of specimens which were exhibited at the Patent Office. 

A considerable portion of the collections has been arranged, and a taxidermist 
employed to repair the specimens of zoology which have been damaged, and to pre- 
pare for exhibition others which have not previously been mounted. ‘The museum 
will soon be an object of continued and increasing interest to the inhabitants of the 
city and to strangers who visit the capital of the United States. 

An assent to the arrangement above stated for taking charge of the government 
collections is by no means inconsistent with the regret expressed in previous reports 
that the law of Congress directed provision to be made from the Smithsonian fund for 
a public museum and library. It must be evident to any one who attentively studies 
the past history of the operations of the Institution that the interest of the money 
expended on the building intended for this purpose would have been much more 
efficiently applied in the development and publication of new truths. But, in all 
cases where many views are to be consulted, the question is not merely what ought 
to be, but what caz be accomplished. From the first there has existed a clear con- 
ception of the means by which the idea of the donor could be best realized, and the 
aim of the majority of the Regents has constantly been to approximate, as nearly as 
the restrictions of Congress would allow, to the plan originally proposed. ‘The policy 
has been invariably the same, and the present reputation and generally acknowledged 
success of the Institution are the result of this undeviating course.* 


‘Smithsonian Report, 1858, pp. 13-16. 


156 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


The portion of the Smithsonian income which can be devoted to a museum, and 
the $4,000 per annum appropriated by Congress, would not together be sufficient*to 
establish and sustain a general collection of specimens of the natural history of the 
world. It will, therefore, be the policy of the Institution, unless other means are pro- 
vided, to confine the collections principally to illustrations of the products of the 
North American continent. For this purpose efforts have been made, principally 
through the various exploring expeditions, to obtain a large number of specimens 
of all the species of the different kingdoms of nature found in North America; and 
at this time the collection under charge of the Institution is more extensive in num- 
ber and variety than any other which has ever before been made relative to this por- 
tion of the globe. It is not in accordance with the general organization of the 
Institution to form a museum of single specimens, interesting only for their rareness, 
but to collect a large number of specimens of each species, particularly of such as 
have not been described, and to distribute these among the several naturalists who 
may have the industry, ability, and the desire to study them; the primary object of 
the Institution, namely, the increase of the existing sum of knowledge in this case, 
as in all others, being kept prominently in view. 

The Institution has now become the curator of the collections of natural history 
and ethnology of the government, and by law is empowered, as it appears to me, to 
make the same disposition of the materials contained in these collections as it does 
of those procured at its own expense; the design will be to render the specimens 
in the greatest degree serviceable to the advance of knowledge. The museum now 
consists of the following collections, of which, according to Professor Baird, about 
one-fifth were brought from the Patent Office: 

First, those of the naval expeditions; second, those of the United States geological 
surveys; third, those of the boundary surveys; fourth, those of surveys for railroad _ 
routes to the Pacific; fifth, of miscellaneous expeditions under the War and Navy 
Departments; sixth, those of miscellaneous collections presented or deposited by socie- 
ties and individuals; and, lastly, of an extensive series of the results of explorations 
prosecuted by the Institution itself. By far the greater portion of the whole has been 
made under the stimulus and immediate direction of the Smithsonian Institution. A 
number of the special collections are still in the hands of those to whom they were 
intrusted for scientific investigation and description. The arrangement of the cases 
and the disposition of the articles intended for public exhibition has been a subject 
requiring considerable thought and experiment. It was not only desirable to obtain 
the largest amount of space for the accommodation of the articles, but, also, to arrange 
the whole so as to harmonize with the architectural embellishment of the large hall 
and thus to produce a proper zesthetical effect.* 


In 1859, the Guide Book, unofficial yet issued by an official of the staff, 
was published with the words ‘‘ Guide to the Smithsonian Institution 
and National Museum’’ on its cover, and about this time the words 
‘‘ National Museum of the United States’’ were painted over the door of 
the exhibition hall. 

Congress did not, however, give legal sanction to the use of this name 
until nearly twenty years later, when providing for the erection of the 
new building to receive the collections given to the Smithsonian Institu- 
tion at the close of the Centennial of 1876. 


WASHINGTON, february, r8or. 


Smithsonian Report, 1858, pp. 40, 41. 


The Genesvs of the United States National Museum. 157 


NOTE A. 
JANUARY I, 1842. 
To the Honorable J. C. SPENCER and 
The Honorable A. P. UPSHUR. 


GENTLEMEN: The undersigned, a committee on behalf of the National Institution 
for the promotion of science, have the honor to submit to your consideration the 
following facts and remarks. 

In a law of the 20th July, 1841, there is a provision in these words: ‘‘ For the pur- 
pose of enabling the Secretaries of the War and Navy Departments to place in a state 
of safe preservation the specimens of natural history which are now deposited in 
their respective offices, or which may be brought there resulting from surveys of the 
unexplored regions of our own country, or from the exploring expedition now in 
the South Seas, by the authority and at the expense of the United States or other- 
wise, a sum not to exceed five hundred dollars,’’ 

And in a law of March 3, 1841, there is another appropriation “for defraying the 
expense of transporting to the City of Washington and of arranging the collections 
made by the Exploring expedition, five thousand dollars.”’ 

These laws are considered as having determined the principles which should 
govern in such cases. 

First, that the expenditures should be made under the direction of the Secretaries 
of the War and the Navy Departments, and 

Second, that the collections should be brought to Washington and be arranged 
there. 

‘In the discharge of these duties, the Secretaries of the two Departments named, 
directed the collections referred to, to be delivered to the care of the National Insti- 
tution, for the purpose of being arranged under its supervision. 

On these accounts, as well as because of your position of Directors of the Institu- 
tion, we have now the honor of addressing you. 

The first appropriation of £500 was expended under the personal superintendence 
of the Secretary of War, he approving all accounts. The second, under that of the 
Secretary of the Navy. But in the course of the business this duty assumed the 
following form: 

The society appointed a committee to supervise the arranging of the collections. 
It was the duty of this committee to suggest the expenditures and employments 
which it considered necessary, to examine into the accounts, and if it found the 
same to be correct, to recommend them to the approval of the Secretary. Under 
this system the appropriations have been expended, and the Institution is now with- 
out further means. 

It is proper to remark that the entire collections of the Institution, as well in books 
as in specimens of natural history and of the arts, and as well those deposited by 
the Government, as those given by individuals and other Institutions and from for- 
eign governments, will in the end belong to the United States, there being a pro- 
vision to that effect in the constitution of the Institution. ‘The whole can, therefore, 
with propriety be considered as public property. 

With this brief exposition we shall now lay before you the state of the affairs of 
the Institution in reference to the collections, deposits, gifts, and expenditures. 

The entire collection is deposited in the upper rooms of the Patent Office; it con- 
sists of— 

Donations from foreign governments. 

Donations from other institutions, foreign and domestic. 

Donations from ministers and consuls abroad, and from officers of our army and 
navy. 


158 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


Donations from individuals and from members of the Institution. 

The Iowa collection of mineralogical and geological specimens, made by R. D. 
Owen, Esq., under the direction of the Treasury Department. 

The collection of mineralogical and geological specimens which had been in 
deposit in the Bureau of the Corps of Topographical Engineers. 

The collection of portraits of distinguished Indians, and the collection of Indian 
curiosities which had been on deposit in the War Department. . 

The minerals, books, papers, and personal effects of the Smithsonian bequest. 

The two shipments which have been received from the Exploring Squadron, con- 
sisting of minerals, specimens of natural history, works of art, implements of war, 
and curiosities. > 

The books, minerals, and works of art belonging to the late Columbian Institute. 

The books, papers, and proceedings of the late American Historical Society. 

Cabinets and specimens, deposited by members in trust, for public use. 

It can not be said that these materials are now arranged. The space which has 
been appropriated to the temporary use of the Institution—the eastern half of the 
upper room of the Patent Office—is entirely insufficient for such a purpose, as well 
as the means and time which have been devoted to them. But as more just concep- 
tions in those respects, as well as the value of the collections, will be derived from 
an exhibition in detail of the latter, it will now be laid before you. 

About 1,000 volumes of books and numbers of pamphlets. 

About 50 maps and charts. 

About 500 castings in plaster, medals, and seals. 

Ten pieces of statuary, marble, or plaster. 

One hundred and sixty-eight paintings. 

About 1,600 bird skins, of which rather more than 4oo have been cleaned, stuffed, 
and mounted, and deposited in cases, but which yet require eyes and to have labels 
properly written and affixed. They also require to be scientifically arranged, the 
first labor being necessarily limited to the preparing of the skins and putting them 
under the protection of cases. It may be proper to remark that to clean, stuff, and 
put in position six bird skins a day, is the greatest result from the labors of an expert 
and experienced taxidermist, and that so much can be done only with skins in good 
order and of moderate-sized birds. Much less is the most that can be done with skins 
that have been twisted and for a long time closely packed, or with skins of large 
birds or of quadrupeds, a single skin of a large bird often requiring from one to 
two days. 

About 160 skins of quadrupeds, about 50 of which have been stuffed, set up, and 
put in cases. 

About 200 glass jars have been filled with mollusca, fishes, and reptiles, but these 
yet require to be divided into more jars and to be arranged, classified, and named ; 
and there yet remains 2 barrels and 10 kegs of wet and soft specimens, which have 
not been opened, except to replenish, when necessary, the preservative material. 

There are about 50,000 botanical specimens, embracing many that are extremely 
rare and entirely new. An able botanist, Mr. Nuttall, who has had the examination 
of this collection, pronounced it equal, if not superior, to any in the world, of the 
kind and from the same regions. He was for a short time employed to aid in the 
arranging of the specimens, and assigned them to orders and genera, but they yet 
require the greater labor of specific distinctions. 

There are about 3,000 specimens of insects, the greater part of which have been 
arranged in genera, but yet require the further and more laborious arrangement into 
species. A large collection of insects, said to be one of the finest of Europe, has 
lately arrived in New York, to be placed in deposit in the Institution for the benefit 
of the public. It is from that well-known and eminent naturalist, C. F. Castleneau, 
Esq., a member of the Institution. We have also notice of a collection of minerals 
being on its way from the School of Mines of Paris, as a present to the Institution. 


PLATE 24. 


Part Il. 


Report of U. S, National Museum, 1897. 


The Genesis of the United States National Museum. ~ 159 


There are probably several hundred thousand shells, constituting a mass of from 30 
to 4o bushels, all valuable and many of them very rare, entirely new, and extremely 
beautiful. With these nothing has yet been done but to open the boxes and clean a 
few of them. Many conchologists have pronounced this the finest collection in the 
United States. It will require much labor and time to arrange it. 

About 500 coralines have been cleaned and partially arranged. About 300 starfish, 
echini, radiati, etc., have received a like attention ; also, about 1oo sponges and about 
2,000 crustacea. And there are yet many more specimens of these, several hundred, 
which have not been examined. 

About 50 fish skins. These are yet in the same condition as when received. 

About 7,000 specimens of minerals are placed under the protection of cases, but 
require a great amount of labor to arrange and label. There are also upwards of 50 
boxes of mineralogical and geological specimens which have not been opened. 

Accessions are daily made to the collections of the Institution in the form of dona- 
tions, and we are now looking with some anxiety for additional shipments from the 
Exploring Squadron. Nor can it be doubted that when the Squadron returns, it will 
be freighted in value and number of specimens equal to all it may have sent home 
during its long and interesting voyage. 

Already the specimens which have been placed ‘in cases, nearly fill the space, one- 
half of the upper room of the Patent Office, which the liberality of the Secretary of 
State assigned temporarily to the use of the Institution; but these specimens are of 
necessity in a crowded state of imperfect arrangement. And the specimens now on 
hand, when put up and properly displayed, will fill the whole of the room. We 
already, therefore, and with much reason, anticipate being straitened for space. 

The occupation of our present place is also merely temporary. The room willina 
few years be required for the purposes for which it was erected. This consideration 
necessarily affects the character of the labors of the Institution in reference to the 
collection, which can not fail to partake of the character of its occupation of the 
room, and in consequence its labors are limited to such as are necessary and prelim- 
inary to a permanent and scientific arrangement. 

The same consideration has influenced the employment which has been authorized. 
The committee to which this matter was intrusted by the Institution, did not feel 
authorized to recommend to the department having charge of the appropriation any 
system which should involve the Government in a liability for one day beyond the 
enduring of the appropriation. 

The appropriation has become exhausted, but the persons employed have contin- 
ued their labors under the hope that the great work upon which they have been 
engaged and which has progressed with such flattering activity, will not now be 
abandoned. ‘These persons are: 

H. King, Esq., Curator of the Institution, who has the general care of the collections 
which haye been intrusted to the Institution, and who is held responsible to the 
Institution for their safekeeping. His particular attention has been devoted to the 
minerals, mollusea, echini, radiati, spongia, and crustacea, and to the construction 
of the cases, procuring of the glassware, and other requisite materials. His compen- 
sation was fixed at first at $3 per day, but afterwards; in consequence of his being 
at much expense for trips he had to make to Philadelphia, New York, and Boston, 
and being liable to such trips in the execution of his duties, it was raised to ¢5 per 
day. 

I. R. Townsend, Esq., taxidermist. His duty is to dress, stuff, prepare, and ar- 
range theskins. His compensation is $3 per day. 

Mr. Nuttall, who was employed on the botanical specimens at $3 per day. He is 
not at present in employ, having other engagements. 

One assistant, Mr. Pollard, at $1.50 per day. 

One other assistant, who is also a good mechanic and arranger, Mr. Vardin, at 
$1.50 per day, 


160 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


One messenger and laborer, at $1 per day. 

The occasional employ of laborers and mechanics, 

All of the appropriations not required for these employments have been expended 
for cases, glassware, and other necessary contingencies to such an establishment, 
the accounts and vouchers for which have been duly rendered. 

As before remarked, these arrangements are but temporary, nor are they com- 
mensurate to the mass of labor which has to be done, or to the just expectations 
which are entertained in reference to it. More force must be employed and more 
varied talent than the means appropriated have enabled the Institution to command. 
With the experience which has been acquired, the committee will, if desired, under 
the correcting hand of the Institution, submit to your consideration their views in 
reference to the expenditure of any future appropriation. 

The funds of the Institution are of two kinds. 

First, the amount derived from the annual tax upon members. 

Second, the amounts appropriated by Congress. 

The first is necessarily small, from the few members liable to the tax, and the 
amount of it, for each, $5 per annum; and it is expended for rare and necessary 
books, necessary printing, cases, and other contingencies. 

The second has as yet been no more than $5,500, and has been expended in the 
manner and for the purposes before indicated. Weare now, however, without means, 
and were it not that the individuals employed continue at the labor in the hope that 
the government will continue its patronage to its own property, the work of prepa- 
ration and arrangement would be suspended, as the most the Institution could do 
from its own funds, would be to employ some one to take care of the collection. 

The object of the Institution is to ‘‘ increase and to diffuse knowledge among men.”’ 
Its time and whatever talent it possesses are faithfully devoted to it. But its mem- 
bers have occupations, private and public, which can not be neglected, and they 
have not the wealth for voluntary contributions. We are therefore obliged to look 
to the Government for aid in funds. In other countries, where, although public 
spirit may not be, individual wealth is so much’ greater, no institution of the kind 
has ever succeeded without government patronage. How much more necessary, 
then, is such patronage with us. And the more justifiable and necessary will this 
patronage appear, when the reflection is made, that the greater part of the property 
under our care already belongs to the government, and that all donations, collec- 
tions, and purchases by the funds of the Institution, must by our constitution event- 
ually take the same course. The Institution is but a curator for the government, 
voluntarily bestowing its time and talents to objects which can not fail to increase 
national fame, to elevate national character, and to promote the design of the great 
philanthropist to ‘‘increase and to diffuse knowledge among men.”’ 

We therefore respectfully but confidently address you as Directors of the Institution 
and as heads of the Departments under which former appropriations were expended 
and solicit your efforts to obtain further government aid. 

There are two points to which we are anxious to draw your particular attention. 
One is an appropriation from Congress for preparing and arranging the government 
collection; the other for additional space. The first is absolutely necessary, for as 
before remarked, former appropriations are exhausted, and the work must be aban- 
doned, if more is not granted. We consider that about $20,000 is required for the 
active and correct prosecution of the work during the year 1842. More labor must 
be applied, and more varied talent be employed; and we believe it will not be 
expected that these requisites are to be obtained without a proper consideration. 
The committee pledge themselves to a faithful superintendence of the expenditures, 
and to a faithful account of it. 

The second is equally necessary. We want space properly to exhibit the speci- 
mens. We acknowledge that our occupation of the half of the room assigned to the 


The Genesis of the United States National Museum. 161 


Institution is but temporary, and that we must look forward to the period when the 
whole room will be required for other purposes; and while our occupation is of this 
character, we are also, and everyone must be, impressed with the conviction that 
our arrangements can not assume that scientific and permanent character which will 
be their ultimate condition. Our present labors must therefore be preliminary to a 
permanent and scientific arrangement, labors, however, not lost as they would be 
necessarily under any circumstances. But to execute these properly more space 
is required, and also the uncontrolled occupation of the whole room. This space is 
the more necessary from the very preliminary character of present labors, as the 
room has to be a workshop as well as an exhibition room. We make this request 
from a thorough conviction of its necessity, and from the belief that if granted 
it would not incommode the Patent Office. And to prevent misapprehension, we 
will take this opportunity to state that from the superintendent of that office, the 
Institution has received those accommodations and facilities which might justly be 
anticipated from a gentleman of his known urbanity and intelligence. 

J. J. ABER, 

A. O. DAYTON, 

FRANCIS MARKOE, Jr., 

Committee. 


NOTE B. 
REPORT UPON THE MATERIALS IN THE INSTITUTE. 


By Doctor PICKERING, Doctor DANA, Doctor HALE, and Mr. BRACKENRIDGE, 


On the 12th of September last I received the charge of the collections of the 
National Institute; and the Hall was soon after placed at my disposal by an order from 
the State Department. My time has since been chiefly occupied in general plans of 
arrangement and accommodation, in reviewing the collections of the Exploring Expe- 
dition that had been already opened, opening those recently received and ticketing 
and taking an account of them. The larger portion has now been gone through 
with, and deposited in the allotted cases, but not yet rendered intelligible by means 
of labeling and arrangement. I should expect, however, some branches of the zoo- 
logical collections, not yet unpacked, and a portion of the botanical yet to arrive. I 
am not prepared at present to make a full report on the proceeds of the Exploring 
Expedition, but have only to offer a few remarks relating generally to the objects 
under my charge. 

The interior arrangement of the Hall is not altogether such as I should have origi- 
nally recommended; but the cases being already completed, it remains only to conform 
to the plan, as far as practicable. By lining the walls with cases, there will be suffi- 
cient accommodation for the present collections of the Institute, including those of 
the Exploring Expedition, and the specimens of American manufactures already 
within the walls. At the same time there is no provision for future increase in any 
department, much less for any new objects that may be contemplated. There is no 
room for a geological series of the United States, for a library, a gallery of the fine 
arts, etc. 

The persons at present employed are: 

Mr. Varden, having the immediate supervision of the Hall and fixtures. 

Mr. Dana, having charge of mineralogy and geology, and also of corals and crus- 
tacea. ~ 

Mr. Brackenridge, having charge of the greenhouse and all botanical collections. 

‘Messrs. Townsend and Pollard, taxidermists, also having charge of the ornitho- 
logical department. 


NAT MUS 97, PT 2 


er 


162 Memorval of George Brown Goode. 


Mr. Falconer, carpenter; constantly occupied, etc. 

Mr. Campbell, messenger and general assistant. 

All have thus far given entire satisfaction. 

Iam not aware that any increase of force is necessary. There is, however, one 
Department on which, from the destructible nature of the objects, we are unable to 
bestow the requisite attention. I allude to that of entomology. We have on deposit 
the extensive and valuable collection of Count Castleneau, and should be ashamed 
to allow it to perish in our hands. The collections, too, of the Expedition, though 
not so extensive as was perhaps expected of us, and in part lost with the Peacock, 
yet it is believed, include materials that in competent hands, might be the means of 
eliciting facts worth preservation; and having a wider bearing than may be supposed 
by those who have not duly weighed the relationship of the different parts of crea- 
tion. Our gatherings in this branch derive a further consequence from our being 
able to connect them with the vegetable products of the widely separated islets of 
the mid-ocean and other unfrequented regions it has been our rare fortune to visit. 

The collections in conchology have only in part been opened (viz, up to the time 
of our leaving the Fiji Islands), and no portion properly arranged and exhibited; 
neither at the present moment can any space be allotted for this purpose. When 
fully displayed, it is believed that those interested in this branch of science will not 
be disappointed as to their extent and value. 

For the ornithological department, and the dried skins of other animals, I must 
refer to the accompanying list; promising, however, that there are besides many 
interesting specimens in osteology, both of man and the inferior animals. 

Of specimens in spirits brought by the Expedition, we number 208 jars, containing 
insects and minor objects in zoology, not less in all, than 4,000 different species; and 
895 envelopes of larger specimens. These last include about goo different species of 
fishes and 200 of reptiles, making a total of 5,100 species in spirits, exclusive of the 
Crustacea noted by Mr. Dana. 

For the botanical department I must refer to the accompanying extract from a 
report by Mr. Brackenridge. I inclose also reports on the drawings made during the 
cruise of the Ex[ploring] Squadron, by Mr. Drayton and Agate; on the mineralogical 
and geological collections, from Mr. Dana; and a paper on the philological depart- 
ment, I obtained from Mr. Hale, who happened accidentally to be in town. As Mr. 
Hale has not enumerated the collections in this latter branch, I will here specify 
them more particularly. The Institute now possesses, exclusive of— 

Thirty-six volumes and pamphlets, and a large bundle of newspaper files; histor- 
ical documents, all printed at Lima and Chile, which may not properly come under 
this head. 

Grammar of the Quichua language, which is still the vernacular in the mining 
towns of the Peruvian Andes. 

Ten tracts in the language of the Society Islands, printed in part at Tahiti. 

Eleven tracts in the Samoan language, from the Mission Press at those islands. 

Printed specimens also of the Fiji and New Zealand languages, including New 
Zealand Testament. 

Sixty-three volumes and pamphlets in the language of the Sandwich Islands, 
including the entire translation of the Bible, printed at those islands by the Amer- 
ican Mission Press; accompanied also with specimens of engraving by native artists, 
one of which in particular, viz, a general map of the islands, would do no discredit 
to the state of the arts at home. 

A Japanese book (apparently a religious work) and other writings, believed to be 
entirely unique in this country. 

The original Tagala grammar, printed two centuries ago at the Philippines, and 
giving an account of that alphabet, now extinct ; the more interesting, as this is one 
of the most remote points to which the invention of letters appears to have pene- 
trated—before, at least, the modern improvements in navigation, 


Report of U. S. National Museum, 1897, Part Il. PLATE 25. 


TIMOTHY DWIGHT. 


The Genests of the United States National Museum. 163 


Nineteen volumes of Malay manuscripts; in all probability the finest collection in 
existence. 

Eleven volumes of Bugis manuscripts. (A note says: ‘‘The only font of Bugis 
type in existence belongs to the American board of Missions at Singapore.’’) The 
Bugis are very proud of their literature, and are now the most prominent people in 
the East Indian Archipelago; for the peculiar geographical features of that vast 
region would seem to preclude the division into nations, which obtains in other parts 
of the globe. 

A Bali grammar. (What follows is derived from other sources than the Iyxpedi- 
tion. ) 

Leaves from a Bali book, presented by Mr. Thomas H. Gillis. 

A Siamese book. 

Several slabs of hieroglyphics from Central America, by Mr. Rupel, United States 
consul, La Guayra. 

Coptic books, by Mr. [George R.] Gliddon, late consul at Cairo, and 

Egyptian antiquities and hieroglyphics, by the same; which are specially worthy 
of notice, and give a juster idea of the style of the works of that wonderful people 
than could be acquired from plates. Some of these fragments have long been wanted 
in this country, and will be looked at with the more interest as the extraordinary 
and authentic annals disclosed by them become more generally known. 

I will not now enter into an account of the implements, arts, and manufactures of 
the various people we have visited. We flatter ourselves, however, that these will 
prove not the least important part of the collections. I will refer now only to the 
interest with which we should look upon some such relics of the tribes who once 
inhabited our Eastern waters; whose race has disappeared ere its history was written. 
When posterity shall demand of the present generation, as men of intelligence, some 
account of these people, what will be forthcoming? It is generally to be feared only 
that which is written in imperishable stone—a few stone hatchets and arrowheads. 

With regard to our Western tribes, better things are to be hoped for, although 
they have already lost some of their arts and native ingenuity from intercourse with 
civilized man, ‘The collection of implements, already within the walls, is quite 
respectable, and the extensive series of their portraits from the War Department may 
well deserve the term of a National Monument. 

Some national depository has long been wanted where individuals could place, 


art, that is rare or instructive, calculated to improve and elevate the mind, or fur- 
nish materials for new deductions. 

The ‘same observations would apply to a national library. Individuals would 
hardly think of making donations to the Congressional Library; neither would for- 
eign societies. Yet two of the finest libraries of our country—indeed, so far as their 
sphere extends, I would term them of a higher grade than the rest—have been got 
together exclusively by donations. I would not by any means be understood to 
undervalue the Congressional Library, and the very judicious selections that have 
been made for it of late years. But shall we always be content with the love of 
mere England, herself by no means in the first rank in every branch of knowledge? 
We look in vain in any part of our country for a full assemblage of French, German, 
Italian, Swedish, Danish, Spanish, Portuguese, Oriental, or hardly classical literature. 

I have omitted to mention that the property of the Institute is at present very 
much exposed to depredation. From 6 tog a. m., and also after 5 p. m., the Hall is 
left entirely unguarded, and might be entered with the utmost ease. I would pro- 
pose that a day watch be set over the Hall and building, as about other public edifices. 

Respectfully submitted. 

CHARLES PICKERING, 


Curator of the National Institute. 
WASHINGTON, November 22, 1872. 


164 Memortal of George Brown Goode. 


BOTANICAL DEPARTMENT. 


Among the various branches of science which it is the object of the National Insti- 
tute to encourage, disseminate, and exhibit for the benefit and improvement of man- 
kind, perhaps none claims its attention so much as botany. By the study of this 
science we learn the uses of trees, shrubs, and plants, whether medicinal, nutritious 
as food, or useful in the arts. The beneficial effects its study produces on society, 
or on those who pursue it, by softening down the asperities of our nature, and lead- 
ing the mind to contemplate objects of a higher order than the mereegratification 
of ordinary amusements—which appears to have been the view taken of it by all 
civilized nations. 

The National Institute through the Ex[ploring] Expedition, possesses one of the 
most extensive and varied botanical collections, from the numerous places which 
the Expedition touched at, that is yet known to have been accumulated during ang 
voyage of similar character. This collection has not yet been arranged or set up 
according to any particular system, whereby it can be referred to conveniently, but 
rests in the Institute in mass. Whenever a set of specimens of the whole is classified 
and arranged systematically, there will still remain a great number of duplicates to 
dispose of to institutions of a similar character, either in exchange or otherwise, as 
the Institute may think fit. 

There is also another point connected with botany to which the scientific world 
has of late years turned their attention, viz, the geographical distribution of plants 
over the surface of the globe; also the altitude or the heights at which certain tribes 
appear anddisappear. On this point the collection could furnish the best information, 
as many of the specimens were found at a height of 16,000 feet above the level of the 
ocean. The herbarium it is proposed to put up in neat bands and arranged in cases 
after the manner of a library. 

The Institute has also come into possession of a collection of rare and highly inter- 
esting living plants, brought home also by the Expedition, which has since received 
several additions in return for seeds distributed from the same source; also a few 
donations of other plants from various quarters. For their preservation, a green- 
house, 50 feet long, and partitioned into two apartments, has been erected on the lot 
behind the Patent Office. ‘The number of species in cultivation amounts to 500, and 
with duplicates of the same, there are about 1,100 plants in pots, over and above 
those now coming up from seeds. As it is expected that donations will frequently 
be made, and as the plants we now have will be increasing in size, the present house 
by another year will hardly suffice to contain them. The propriety also of having 
a lot of ground fenced in where these plants could be set out during the summer 
months, and which could also be used for the raising of ornamental trees, shrubs, 
and other hardy plants, which may come into the possession of the Institute, is 
strongly urged. The meagerness of our parterres and shrubberies evidently shows 
that additions are wanting for ornamental gardening. 

It would also be a receptacle for proving all samples of fruits, flowers, and escu- 
lents that may from time to time be presented to the Institute, there being, so far as 
I am aware, no public establishment of the kind in existence in the Union. Officers 
of our Navy and consuls residing in foreign countries might do a great deal in intro- 
ducing fruits, vegetables, and flowers; and whenever it is known that such an estab- 
lishment exists, there is every reason to anticipate donations, where the country in 
general is to be benefited by such an enlightened and commendable scheme. A 
nucleus once formed, with a gradual accumulation of stock, and a steady persever- 
ance in its support and furtherance, we might, at some not very distant day, vie with 
the most celebrated establishments of the same kindin Europe. The progress of the 
benefit to be expected must be, like the undertaking, slow but sure, and the effects 
will soon become evident to every enlightened citizen. 


The Genesis of the United States National Museum. 165 


The following is a list of plants, or number of species in the herbarium, collected 
at the various places visited by the Expedition: 


1 EGE: Gane Se ee rst Wong Seni 300 | Low Coral Islands (in all) ....... a7 
Cape de Verde Islands..........- Conpoandwach Wslands.. sc... .2 r= <1 883 
“vig Lf We SOUR HOS 0s 28 ee anaes 950 | Oregon country .....-.-. ¢,+.---: I, 218 
Patagonia (Rio Negro) ...-.-..-. TET OMOEA « Sic. tein a pale ante sly pions mms 519 
Terra del Fuego... .<-....5-+...3. Baal UNGAT ele cca lie rine © 25 02" oro she oie sedh= 381 
Chile and Chilean Andes......... AAD EMAILS oar. i, on. ciovh anos 6,099 » 80 
Peru and Peruvian Andes........ S2OMMVEMICATAOES fis ce alee er\ a aon tn 102 
Jneie no RS 2 hee Je ay Seas eee pea TUT SMAI ers a no on iajee = oe 2 nie 58 
Samoa, or Navigator Islands...... 457 | Mangsi Islands..............--.- 80 
New eto llanCeraces esha er 5. <= 789 | Cape of Good Hope.........-...- 330 
Dreeenlandies om is ke ates oo 5 Post, MLCLENA laje.cn a eine fia 2 eatin ols = 20 
Jord Auckland Island ........... 50 

(Wempataby |; -e- 6-22 ee 3 eo 8 236 Total number of species. ... 9, 674 
OAL CV ea 786 


The number of seeds brought and sent home by the Expedition amounted to 684 
species, the most of which have been sent all over the country. Several cases of live 
plants were also sent home, of the existence of which there are no traces. The live 
plants brought home by the squadron amounted to 254 species, and these now form 
part of the greenhouse collection. 


Won. D. BRACKENRIDGE. 
NOVEMBER, 1842. 


REPORT OF MR. DANA. 


The inadequacy of the space in the Hall of the Patent Office at present allotted for 
the departments of geology and mineralogy, becomes daily more obvious, as the 
extent of our collections is better known. ‘The spacious hall is a noble one for the 
purpose to which it is devoted; but so many distinct sciences claim a share of the 
room, that only a small area can be set apart for any one of them. The collections 
of the Exploring Expedition swell out beyond our expectations, and when fully 
arranged there will be room for little else. 

The packages of mineral and geological specimens already opened occupy three of 
the cases in the Hall, and there are yet seven or eight boxes untouched. These 
Expedition collections include suites of specimens from the following countries 
and islands: 

1. Brazil, illustrating especially the deposits of gold and gems in the great mining 
district of Minas Geraes; also the structure of the country about Rio Janeiro. 

2. Rio Negro, Patagonia, where the extensive pampas of La Plata, and the Ter- 
tiary deposits upon which they rest, afforded us a series of interesting specimens, 
exhibiting the character of these great prairies of the south, and the salt lakes that 
abound over them. 

3. Orange Bay, Terra del Fuego, where terminates the great chain of the Andes. 
A species of fossil and the nature of the rock deposits, appear to afford sufficient 
evidence of the similar and consentaneous origin of this portion of the chain with 
the Andes of Chile and Peru. 

4. Chile and the Chilean Andes. The mountains were twice ascended by parties 
from the Expedition, and specimens obtained, in addition to the rocks of the coast, 
and ores from copper mines. 

5. Lima and the Peruvian Andes, affording us gold and silver ores. The summit 
of the Andes was passed bya party of officers, and among their collections is a 
fossil Ammonite, a large extinct species of shell, obtained at a height of 16,000 feet. 


166 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


6. Oregon. The collections illustrate the rock formations of Northwest America, 
including the ltgnite or coal deposits of the Cowlitz and Fraser River, the sand- 
- stones and clay slide occurring at intervals from Puget Sound into California, afford- 
ing numerous organic remains of shells, echini, fish, etc., and the granites, basaltic 
rocks, limestones, ores, etc., of the Territory. 

7. Upper California. 

8. The Sandwich Islands. A region of volcanoes of various ages from the great 
gulf of Lua Pele, where lakes of liquid fire still boil, tothe lofty mountains of the 
western islands of the group, which in the lapse of time have been so shattered by 
convulsions and worn by an abrading sea, rains, and running water, that no distinct 
trace remains of the vent or vents that ejected the successive layers of basaltic rock. 
On account of this difference of age in the several parts of the group, we have not 
only complete collections of modern lavas, but others illustrating the operations of 
these fires for ages back. The late eruption of June, 1841, is well illustrated by 
numerous specimens from its lavas or scoria, and from the sand hills and new beach 
formed as the lavas entered the sea. The tops of the high mountains of Hawaii, 
each about 14,000 feet in elevation, have also contributed to the collections, through 
the exertion of the officers of the Vincennes, who were long engaged in explorations 
on this island. 

g. Navigator or Samoan Islands, a region of ancient basaltic mountains and extinct 
craters, some of whose twisted lavas and scoria seemed to be of quite recent origin. 

to. Society Islands, of similar structure, but with fewer evidences of modern vol- 
canic action. 

11. Fiji Islands, also basaltic and containing some boiling springs. 

12. New Zealand, combining the craters, active and extinct, boiling springs, and 
volcanic products of the other Polynesian islands, with granite rocks, sandstones, 
and shales, and deposits of coal. 

13. New Holland, the collections from the coal region, including the fossil vege- 
tation, and from the subjacent rocks which abound in organic remains, is probably 
the most extensive that ever left the country. 

14. Philippine Islands, a region of granite and talcose rocks, sandstone, shales, and 
limestone, with mines of gold, copper, lead, and coal, besides containing one of the 
largest active volcanoes of the East Indies, and many extinct craters, boiling 
springs, etc. 

15. Sooloo Sea, a region of numberless extinct craters or voleanic mountains and 
abounding in coral reefs. 

16. Singapore. 

17. Cape of Good Hope. 

18. St. Helena. 

19. Cape Verde. 

20. Island of Madeira, mostly consisting of basaltic rocks, tufas, or lavas, and 
remarkable for the grandeur of its mountain scenery, and the richness of its vegeta- 
tion. 

21. The South Shetlands, which afforded large masses of sal ammoniac. 

22. Rocks and earth from the Antarctic land, taken from icebergs in its vicinity— 
principally granite, basalt, and a red, compact, quartz rock or sandstone. 

To these should be added the collections from numerous coral islands, which include 
not only specimens of dead coral rock, the material of the islands, but also various 
living corals now growing about their shores. We leave the corals for the present, 
as they require separate remark. 

The above will give some idea of the interest that attaches to the Expedition | 
collection. 

Besides the three cases in the Hall, to which I have alluded, two others are all 
that, with due regard to the other departments, can be set apart for the sciences of 
geology and mineralogy. ‘There are already large collections of minerals waiting to 


Report of U. S, National Museum, 1897. Part Il. PLATE 26. 


The Genesis of the United States National Museum. 167 


be arranged, to which Colonel Totten has generously added his entire cabinet.= The 
extensive collection which accompanied the Smithsonian bequest has been often 
noticed, and we pass it by without further remark at present than to testify to the 
beauty and interest of its specimens. In addition, there are 27 boxes from the Iowa 
Territory, enclosing specimens from the lead and copper mines, and others elucidating 
its general geological structure, collected by the able geologist of that region, Mr. 
D. D. Owen. A fine suite of Ohio fossils has been received from Mr, Locke, of Cin- 
cinnati, comprising numerous species of trilobites. A rare collection of bones of 
mammoth size, the remains of a megatherium, an extinct animal, was lately obtained 
at Skiddaway Isle, Georgia,and ytheliberty of Doctor Screven, of Savannah, are now 
in the Hall. Other packages have been received from M. C. Buck, William A. Irvin, 
Robert Brown, Captain R. Latimore, D. A. Buckley, of Jacksonville, Illinois; Fr. 
Markoe, jr., of Washington; J. M. Allen, of Albany; M. Strong, of Vermont; Martin 
Johnston, Mr. Ziegler, Joseph Willett, of Maryland; J. I. Greenough, Professor U. 
Parsons, Mr. Mecklin, of Maryland; G. R. Gliddon, consul in Egypt; W. L. Ames, 
of New Jersey; Doctor J. H. Caustin, C. D. Barton, of New York City; William M. 
Mitchell, of Virginia; Doctor Lewis Sayinsch, and O. Root, esq., of Syracuse, New 
York. Specimens are constantly arriving, and now, after the late circulars issued 
by the several Departments of Government to our military and naval officers and 
consuls, they may be expected in still greater numbers. 

After arranging the expedition specimens, there will be one case and a part of 
another for all the mineral collection, the Iowa geological specimens, and the many 
others in our possession. With the exception of the minerals, for which there is 
scant room, the whole must remain closed. 

The importance of these sciences, and the interest of the country in its mineral 
resources, make it desirable that some plan like the following should be adopted, 
and as soon as may be carried into execution: There should be a complete collection 
of minerals, systematically arranged, comprising specimens from all countries, and 
illustrating fully every branch of the science. For geology—in the collections of 
which are included rock specimens, fossils, soils, and whatever may illustrate the 
formation of our globe, the changes in its progress, its present condition, and min- 
eral or agricultural resources—I would suggest that, in addition to cases for foreign 
geology, there be a special case set aside for each State in the Union, to contain 
specimens of all its productions, mineralogical and geological. This plan car- 
ried out, a single walk through the Hall would convey the information of years of 
travel; the mineral wealth of each State would be open for inspection, and the 
nature of their productions and their comparative value might at once be read off, 
Those interested in coal explorations would find here the series of rocks which, in 
other States or regions, are associated with this mineral and indicate its presence; and 
near by those rocks also which by some resemblance have so often led to fruitless 
explorations; the true and the false might be readily compared, and, with the definite 
information contained, treatises on this subject, before scarcely intelligible, could be 
read with profit. The same with the ores of iron, copper, lead, gold, silver, etc., and 
the various materials used in building, soils, etc. 

Such an arrangement, embracing within its plan every part of our country, will 
enlist exertions as widely extended; and we may confidently believe that the titles 
New York, Pennsylvania, Virginia, etc., inscribed on the respective cases, would not 
long stand over empty shelves. Indeed, for some States, a second and a third case 
might soon be required. The Iowa case could now be filled and a commencement 
might be made with the case for New York, also that for Ohio, Virginia, Maryland, 
Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, and New Jersey. As geological surveys are in progress 
in many States, or have been completed, there will be little difficulty in general in 
obtaining complete suites for the National Institute. The corals in the Hall, with few 
exceptions, were received from the Exploring Expedition. The collection is exten- 
sive and possesses peculiar interest inasmuch as the species are mostly from seas that 


168 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


have seldom contributed to the cabinets of this or any country. ‘The various cruises 
of the vessels among the numerous Pacific islands afforded unusual opportunities for 
the collection and examination of these singular forms of animal life, and much that 
is novel has been brought to light with regard to the structure of coral islands, the 
growth of corals, the nature and forms of the animals that deposit them (of which 
a large collection of drawings has been made), besides discovering many new species 
and correcting some errors in former descriptions. ‘The number of species brought 
home is not less than 250, and if to this be added the smaller corallines it will 
amount to above 350, besides 50 species of still inferior grade of organization, the 
sponges. The corals now occupy two cases, which are barely sufficient to receive 
them, A separate case of West India corals might soon be filled, as we may expect 
large collections through the exertions of the officers of the Navy cruising in those 
seas. It would be quite important that these productions from the opposite sides of 
our globe, the East and West Indies, be kept separate. 

The beauty of these collections is sufficient of itself, as is believed, to engage the 
attention and more than a passing glance or hasty word of admiration. But their 
interest is greatly enhanced when it is considered that thousands of square miles of 
land have been added to our globe by the labors of the minute coral builder, and 
that seas have been studded with islands that otherwise would have remained a waste 
of waters. 

Before closing this communication I may add a word on the crustacea in the Hall, 
which department fell into my hands in the expedition and comes under my charge 
also at the Institute. The collection now arranged inclides about 650 species, nearly 
all of which are from the Exploring Expedition. ‘The whole number of species col- 
lected and examined during our cruise is not far from 1,000, more than half as many 
as the whole nuinber known. Of these, 500 and upwards, have been figured ; and not 
less than 450 out of the 500 are new species, besides many others in the collection not 
yet particularly examined. About 250 species are oceanic and belong to genera of 
which not over 30 species are known, affording, as is thus seen, a great number of 
novelties to be brought out in the publications of the Expedition. The most of these 
oceanic species are microscopic, generally less than a tenth of an inch in length. 
Although so minute, they sometimes swarm in such numbers as to give a red tinge 
to the ocean over large areas. While at Valparaiso, the sea for miles to the south- 
ward appeared as if tinged with blood, owing to the myriads of these minute crus- 
tacea. Some species are so transparent that, under the microscope, all the processes 
of vital action, the motion of every wheel in the complex organization of animal 
life is open to view, exhibiting many novel facts, curious and important to the 
physiologist. 

The arrangement of the Expedition specimens may be completed in the space that 
we now occupy, but the addition of such American and foreign specimens as will 
gradually collect around this nucleus will finally extend the collection over double 
its present area, 


Very respectfully, 
JAMES D. DANA. 


NOVEMBER, 1842. 


DEPARTMENT OF PHILOLOGY AND ETHNOGRAPHY. 


One of the sciences which have of late years attracted an increasing attention, and 
one which from its subject would seem to claim a peculiar regard, is what may be 
termed the Natural History of the Human Race, or, as some haye named it, anthro- 
pology. It divides itself naturally into various branches, possessing distinct names 
of interest, and requiring different methods of study. One of them, and that, perhaps, 
to which the Institute will be able to contribute most largely, treats of the manners 


The Genesis of the United States National Museum. 169 


and customs of the various nations and tribes of mankind, as indicating the char- 
acter and the grade of civilization which is to be ascribed to them. ‘Travelers in 
Egypt inform us that, from the representations of objects and views pictured on the 
monuments of that country, one may obtain a clear and probably accurate idea of 
the mode of life of the ancient inhabitants, and can thence form a better conception 
of their national characteristics than from all the works of historians. ‘The natives 
of most countries, particularly those less advanced in civilization, possess no mon- 
uments of this kind, which may be copied or transported into our midst, like those 
of Egypt. But one may have the very implements and manufactures which those 
pictures would represent, the canoe and net of the fisherman, the bow and javelin 
of the hunter, the spear and club, the helmet and buckler with which the warrior 
went out to meet his enemy; we may have the clothing, the domestic utensils, the orna- 
ments for the dance—in short, enough to show the state of the arts, the daily habits, 
and the ideas of comfort and prosperity existing among particular people. Among 
the collections of the Exploring Expedition deposited with the Institute will be 
found nearly all the articles of native manufacture in use among two tribes of dis- 
tinct race, the New Hollanders and the Fijians; those of the former number about 
a dozen, while the latter yield several hundreds. A single glance at the two collec- 
tions will give a clearer idea of the wide difference existing between these tribes 
than any description, 

In tracing the migrations of a people and the connections of distant branches, the 
comparison of arts and social habits may, if pursued with caution, be an important 
guide. A person knowing nothing of our language or history, who should visit the 
United States, after having traveled in Kurope, would have little doubt from which 
country of the latter our ancestors proceeded. ‘The islands of the Pacific are peo- 
pled by two distinct races, the one having a yellowish brown complexion, with 
flowing hair; the other a dusky skin, frizzled or wooly hair, and features approach- 
ing the African type. There is not in the climate or nature of the islands whieh 
they respectively inhabit any reason why their habits and mental characteristics 
should differ. Yet we find that the art of pottery and the use of the bow are 
conunon to all the islanders of the latter or dark-skinned race, without exception, 
while they are entirely unknown to the former, except where they have been ac- 
quired in late times from the other. We must, therefore, presume that these arts were 
brought by the dusky tribes who possess them from the original seat whence they 
have emigrated. These observations will show that the articles of this description 
preserved by the Institute are not to be regarded merely as amusing toys or as objects 
of idle curiosity, but possess an important scientific value. 

Another department of this study relates to the physical varieties of the human 
race. In stature, in complexion, in the nature of the hair, and the shape of the cra- 
nium the differences that prevail between various tribes are very striking. Some 
have supposed it possible to classify all these varieties under these principal divi- 
sions or races, while others have believed them to be so numerous and to fade into 
one another by such insensible gradations as to set all classification at defiance. 
Still there can be no doubt that every distinct people possesses a peculiar cast of 
countenance and style of complexion and feature, what is commonly called a 
national physiognomy, and that separate tribes and nations, descended from the same 
stock, preserve in their physical characteristics the traces of their common origin. 

Knowing, as we do, that the influence of climate and manner of life is powerful in 
modifying the constitution and personal appearance of those subjected to it, a ques- 
tion of the highest importance arises as to the extent to which this modifying power 
may be effective. Some have supposed that all the peculiarities which distinguish 
the varieties of mankind have had their origin in this influence of climate and 
social habits, while others have considered the power much more limited, and main- 

* tain that these peculiarities have existed unchanged as they were originally stamped 


170 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


on the progenitors of the different races. These opposite views are supported at the 
present day by writers of the highest authority, and as the question is evidently one 
to be settled not by reasoning so much as by observation, every fact bearing on this 
point merits to be recorded. The Institute possesses a small collection of crania, 
obtained by the Exp[loring] Expedition, which will afford some useful results, and 
the series of Indian portraits due to the War Department may be considered, in 
this respect, invaluable. ; 

A third division of this study is comparative philology or the science of languages. 
Speech has been called the first and highest development of human reason; it is 
also the clue by which we trace more evenly than by any other means, the affiliation 
of tribes and the relationship which exists between different nations. By the com- 
parison of languages we can prove that nearly all the nations of Europe—whether 
of Celtic, or Latin, or German, or Sclavonic origin—are not only closely allied one to 
another, but belong to the same stock with the inhabitants of Persia and Hindustan. 
By the same means we ascertain that a race of Malay origin has peopled all the 
islands of Polynesia. Modern philologists have discovered that the natives of Amer- 
ica, from the arctic sea to Cape Horn, speak languages which, though dissimilar in 
words, possess a striking grammatical resemblance—like different metals cast in the 
same mould. 

In the pursuit of this interesting study, the importance of obtaining vocabularies 
of the languages spoken by secluded or newly discovered tribes is easily seen. 
Manuscript works in language of which little is known are also of great value for 
the investigation of their grammatical structures, and the collection of East Indian 
manuscripts brought home by the Exploring Expedition may be signaled as possess- 
ing unusual interest. The Institute is not less indebted to Mr. Stephens for the 
monumental slabs from Central America, covered with those remarkable hieroglyph- 
ics, which are now awaiting the appearance of some new Champollin to unfold 
their mysterious purport. 

In search of these departments of ethnographical science, all persons whose pur- 
suits bring them in eontact with many varieties of one kind, and in particular the 
officers of the navy in foreign stations, have an opportunity, by obtaining and trans- 
mitting articles of native workmanship—crania or mummies of particular tribes, and 
vocabularies or manuscripts of languages little known—to add materials to the gen- 
eral stock, which may hereafter be of invaluable service to the scientific investigator. 


ES ETAT: 
NOVEMBER, 1842. 


OUTLINES OF THE ETHNOGRAPHICAL COLLECTIONS, CHIERPLY 
FROM THE EXPLORING EXPEDITION. 


NEW HOLLAND. 


Buckles, or small narrow shields. 

Boomerangs, the singular missile, often described. 
Waddies or clubs. 

The throwing stick, adjutant for throwing javelins. 
Beads or wampum, made of the stem of a grass, etc. 


FIJI ISLANDS. 


War clubs of various patterns, and the small war clubs used as a missile. 
Bows and arrows, slings. 

Spears, both for war and fishing. 

Wooden idols, oracles, headdress of priest, sacred cava cup, etc. 

Wigs, combs, turbans, etc. 


Report of U. S, National Museum, 1897. 


Part Il. 


PLATE 


27. 


i 


Lis 


AY che 
3 “kaa 


The Genests of the United States National Museum. 171% 


Pateras or cava bowls, dishes, etc. 

Matting, and baskets of various patterns. 

Pottery—water vessels and for cooking. 

Musical instruments, consisting of Pandean pipes, nose flutes, war conch, and 
drum. 

Mosquito nets, fans, fly brushes, wooden pillows. 

Stone adzes. 

Fishing nets and lines, cordage, etc. 

Dresses for females, of various and some brilliant colors. 

Armlets and necklaces in great variety, neck ornaments, headbands. 

Tapa, or cloth, also cf great variety of patterns in the stained figures, 


SAMOA ISLANDS AND TONGATABU. 


These islands, in common with the other Polynesians, have evidently derived their 
arts mostly from the Fijis. Their implements as we recede become less numerous, 
with often much diversity in the model. I note only— 

Arrows for catching pigeons, of the Samoa Islands. 

Models of the single canoe. 

Models, large, double Tonga canoe, used for distant sea voyages. 

Rasps of shark’s skin, for working wood, common to many Polynesian islands. 


TAHITI. 


We obtained very few things at Tahiti, where native implements are becoming 
rare. We saw no weapons of the original stamps. 


SANDWICH ISLANDS. 


The same remarks apply in a good measure to this group. Native ingenuity dis- 
appears when brought in contact with civilized man, and with a knowledge of 
money the bark-beaten cloth of the South Seas gives place to calico at 10 cents a 
yard. We obtain here, however, more extensive collections. I mention only— 

The large calabashes, used as baskets to carry burdens, and found so convenient 
by all travelers. 

Tapa, in imitation of European patterns. 

Models of canoe. 

Feather ornaments—the yellow is the favorite color here., 


MARQUESAS ISLANDS. 


Specimens of the ingenious carving of these islanders, procured many years ago, 
were presented by Mr. Demester. 


LOW OR POMOTEE ARCHIPELAGO. 


These lonely coral reefs present attractions only for this amphibious race of 
people. Implements of the same pattern with other Polynesian, but much ruder. 
There is no longer any stone for hatchets, and a piece of shell is substituted, while 
a crooked root serves for a handle. There is no bark suitable for making cloth or 
tapa, and their clothing consists exclusively of matting. 


PENRHYNS ISLAND. 
The same remarks will apply to Penrhyns Island, with its wild and impetuous 


_ inhabitants; but, being covered with cocoanut trees, it is much more populous, and 
the implements obtained show neater workmanship. 


172 Memortal of George Brown Goode. 


NEW ZEALAND. 


Still Polynesian, but much variation in the style of their manufactures and orna- 
mental carving. Their cloaks, made of New Zealand flax, a beautiful article. 

Neck ornaments of green-colored stone or jade. The thin, slender club, or wooden 
sword (used with both hands), almost their only weapon prior to the introduction of 
firearms, etc. 

KINGSMILL, ISLANDS. 


A remarkable change in most things from the Polynesians. Long-pronged spears 
set with sharks’ teeth; as likewise swords of different lengths. Woven coats of mail 
and cuirasses for protection. A porcupine fish for a cap. Natural fishhooks of 
crooked roots, etc. A very large and interesting collection of the implements of 
these coral islands was lost in the Peacock. 


EAST INDIES. 
Models of Malay proas. 
Krisses or seymetars, spears and shield, battle-axes, musical instruments. 


TERRA DEL FUEGO. 


The collection is nearly complete, though the articles are so few in number. 

Bows and arrows, the latter, singularly enough, the most beautiful we have met 
with—flint head. 

Bone-headed fish spears, likewise bearing a strong analogy to those of our northern 
Indians. 

Seal-skin quivers, slings, paddles, and necklaces. 


PERU. 


Our collection of antiquities is quite respectable ; pottery, cloth, nets, plastering, 
etc., from the ancient graves. I must also particularize the headdress of ‘‘the last 
of the Incas,’’ presented by Mr. Sweetzer. 


OREGON AND NORTHWESTERN COAST. 


Our collections here were full. 

Paddles, models of canoes, etc., some of former ornamented with different colors. 

Carved combs, the conical, woven, and painted hat (the same pattern is used 
throughout East India). 

Bows and arrows, the heads of bone, flint, and now iron; almost their only weapon, 
except now knives. 

Various grotesque wooden masks. 

Dice, made of beaver’s teeth, wooden decoy-duck. 

Model of cradle showing the mode of flattening the cranium, for which the Chi- 
nooks are so famous. 

Model of fastening a child to a board and carrying on horseback. 

Pipes of wood and bone, imitating steamboat, houses, and other fashions of civi- 
lization. 

Stone pipes, representing grotesque figures of original pattern. 

Carved stone saucers, some well worthy the attention of those who think genius 
only the offspring of civilization. 

Ornaments of dentalium shells; snowshoes. 

Blankets and belts, of native weaving. 

Feather blankets. 

Cloaks of vegetable fiber ; much after the New Zealand pattern. 

Leather or buckskin dresses, moccasins, belts, etc. 

Beautiful membrane cloaks, and baidare (covered skin canoes) of farther north. 


The Genests of the United States Nationat Museum. 173 


CALIFORNIA. 


A race of different origin is seen in the different style of manufactures, ornaments, 
and woven baskets for carrying water and cooking; others richly ornamented with 
feathers, plumes, ear ornaments, beadwork. 

Bows and arrows of the usual American pattern ; war spears headed with bone. 

Feather dress for a sort of priest or devil. 

The arrow-proof cuirass and hemispherical cap of the Shasta Indians. 


C. PICKERING. 
NOVEMBER, 1842. 


REPORT UPON THE DRAWINGS MADE BY MESSRS. DRAYTON AND 
AGATE. 


Through the labors of the artists, Messrs. Drayton and Agate, in connection with 
the literary and scientific duties of the other officers, the journals of the Expedition 
are of two kinds—the written and the pictorial, and, although the former is neces- 
sarily the more complete, yet the latter in consequence of the industry of those gen- 
tlemen and the large number and faithfulness of the sketches made, would of itself 
give a very thorough account of the islands and races we have seen; and in many 
respects far more detailed and satisfactory descriptions than is possible with the pen. 
The scenery of the islands, their mountains and forests, their villages, with interior 
and exterior views of the huts or houses of both chiefs and common people, spirit 
houses or temples, war implements, fortifications, household utensils, tools, canoes, 
the natives sitting in council, dressed and painted for war, the domestic scenes of the 
villages, costumes, tattooing, modes of cooking, eating, drinking cava, taking and 
curing fish, swimming, gambling, and other amusements, war dances, club dances, 
jugglery, and numerous other particulars illustrating the modes of life, habits, and 
customs of the various tribes inhabiting the islands or countries visited, have been 
sketched with fidelity. Indeed, nothing escaped their pencil when time was allowed, 
and the series of sketches when finished—for many were necessarily left in outline— 
will be more instructive and interesting than the highest literary abilities could 
render the journal of the voyage. One picture by Mr. Agate, representing a temple 
on a newly discovered island, and the cocoanut grove about it, containing on one 
side, three or four half-naked savages starting in affright from an officer who is just 
beginning to puff a cigar, and is pouring the volumes of smoke from his mouth, the 
impression of such a scene can not be conveyed in words, nor the idea it gives of the 
ignorance and superstition of the savage. The portraits are numerous, and are 
not merely general sketches, but accurate likenesses of particular individuals—so 
faithful, indeed, although but the work of a few minutes in the hands of our skillful 
artists, that the natives would cry out with surprise the name of the individual when 
a sketch was shown them. 

Besides historical and ethnographical drawings, the sketches of objects in natural 
history are very numerous; and they embrace all departments of natural science, 
including some geological sketches. The variety and beauty of marine animals in 
the coral seas of the Pacific are beyond description. Like birds in our forests, fish 
of rich colors and strange forms sport among the coral groves; and various mollusca— 
animals low in the scale of organization—cover the bottom with living flowers. A 
new world of beings is here opened to an inhabitant of our cold climate, and many 
of these productions are so unlike the ordinary forms of life that, but for our eyes, 
we could scarcely believe in their existence. Many of them are among the most 
brilliant and beautiful objects drawn and colored by Mr. Drayton. Among the geo- 
logical sketches by Mr. Drayton the representations of the great crater of Lua Pele, 
especially the night scenes of its boiling lakes of lava, are highly valuable. There is 
probably no volcano in the world where the processes of volcanic action are more 


174 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


laid open to view, and on this account these sketches are very unlike the ordinary 
pictures of a burning mountain, and far more interesting to the geologists. Scarcely 
less interesting than these volcanic scenes are the views taken among the Andes of 
Peru and Chile. : 

The following list gives more particularly the number of drawings in the several 
departments. The whole number of distinct objects or scenes delineated is 2,100. 
Of these 200 are portraits, 180 plants, 75 reptiles, 260 fish, 850 mollusca, and over 500 
landscapes and historical sketches. The drawings of crustacea, corals, birds, and 
quadrupeds were mostly by the naturalists in charge of these departments, and are 
not here enumerated. 

The sketches, to which we have referred, have been made in the following differ- 
ent regions, and they have been the more or less complete according to the length 
of time spent at these places. It should be observed that the several groups of 
islands in the Pacific, although not far distant from one another, have each marked 
peculiarities in the physiognomy, dress, domestic manners, etc., of their inhabitants. 

(1) Madeira, (2) Cape Verde, (3) Rio de Janeiro, (4) Rio Negro, Patagonia, (5) Terra 
del Fuego, (6) Chile, (7) Peru, (8) several islands of the Low Archipelago, (9) Society 
Islands, (10) Navigator Islands, (11) New Zealand, (12) New Holland, (13) Tonga- 
tabu, (14) Fiji Islands, (15) Kingsmill Islands, (16) Sandwich Islands, (17) Oregon 
Territory, (18) Philippine Islands, (19) Sooloo Sea, (20) Singapore, (21) Cape Town, 
(22) St. Helena; besides some small scattered islands in the Pacific unnoticed in 
this enumeration. Of these places, the pictorial account of the Fiji and Sandwich 
islands and Oregon Territory is the most full. 

The drawings, as has been remarked, are not finished. To complete them on the 
spot would have been impracticable where so many things equally important were 
demanding immediate attention, and had it been attempted the sketches could not 
have exceeded one-fourth their present number. They are so far complete, however, 
that they might in a short time be finished up by the artists. 

In addition to sketching, Mr. Drayton has written down the music of the natives 
at many of the islands, and the note or tones which the different nations employ in 
speaking. 

On nearing land the artists were besides employed in drawing headlands, and of 
them there are nearly 500 in addition to the other sketches. 


DRIED PREPARATIONS IN NATIONAL INSTITUTE, NOVEMBER 18,1842. 


Catalogue showing the number of birds, quadrupeds, reptiles, fishes, etc., prepared 
in the rooms of the National Institute. 


Speci- 
mens, 
Birds from:the exploring expedition... 0.20 ence ens <sclee = + 0 ms ees 471 
Birds from South America and other foreign parts..............+++++ee 86 
Birds presented by the Jardin du Roi, Paris.......-...------sss.e-ee eee 87 
Birds ‘of North Aum erieay erie srs sterols ete oie a ehene capac ot ats eimai teate eet aa 276 
— 920 
Quadrupeds from the exploring expedition.............--..+e-e+seeeees 26 
Quadrupeds from United States and other parts......--....++--...-+--- 49 
ree So 
Reptiles from the exploring expedition, etc... ........6+++ sees eee rece 66 
Fishes from the exploring expedition, etc......-++ +++. sere eee e eee eeeeee 48 
— 114 
I, 109 


There remain probably 300 bird skins to be set up, brought by the exploring 
expedition, and about 20 quadrupeds, some of large size. This is exclusive of an 


immense number of duplicate specimens. 
Ciz: 


Report of U. S. National Museum, 1897. Part Il. PLATE 28. 


ANDREW ELLICOTT. 


The Genests of the United States National Museum. 175 


NOTE C. 


REMARKS SUBMITTED TO THE HONORABLE MR. WALKER BY MR, 
MARKOE AND COLONEL ABERT. 


In conformity with the desire you expressed, that we should put on paper the 
substance of our conversation with you on certain matters connected with the Insti- 
tute, we submit the following to your consideration : 

There are several points which, to our experience and reflections, are essential to 
the prosperity of the Institute, and to the great objects for which it was chartered. 
These are: 

1st, That the Institute should be the organ of the Government in the arrangement 
and preservation of the collections, and in the supervision of the appropriations 
which the Government may make for those purposes, 

2d, That the Institute should have the power of disposing of all duplicates by 
a system of exchanges with other institutes, or with States, or with individuals. 

As all the Government collections are placed under the care of the Institute, and 
as all the collections which have been made, or will hereafter be made by the Insti- 
tute, must, by its charter, eventually become the property of the Government, the 
necessity of a harmonious and intimate intercourse between the Institute and the 
Government seems, to our judgment, self-evident. This idea is clearly maintained 
in the charter of the Institute, which makes the six heads of the different Govern- 
ment Departments, six of its Directors. 

But the nominal charge which the Institute now has, of the collections, amounts to 
nothing, and the same may be said of the very slight and extremely indirect influ- 
ence which it has been allowed to exercise over the Government expenditures for 
the preservation and arrangement of the collections. At present there are three 
controlling or operating powers over these subjects: First, the Library Committee 
of Congress; second, the Navy Department; and third, the Institute; but of this 
last, its influence is so slight, if it can be said to have any, that it would be too 
much to say it is either felt or acknowledged. Such a divided state of control can 
not fail to operate injuriously upon persons employed and upon their duties, as it 
is difficult to say who is their head, who shall direct or superintend their operations, 
or who shall decide upon the propriety of expenditures, and to whom they are 
accountable. 

It is clear, to our judgment, that the desired and necessary control can not well 
be exercised by the Library Committee. This committee can not be considered as 
present, upon an average, for more than six months of each year; and when present 
the legislative functions of its members must occupy each the greater part of their time 
and minds.* It is equally clear that these powers can not be well exercised by the 
Navy Department. In addition tc its other various and highly important duties, 
there is no kindred occupation in any of its interesting functions which would give 
to it the means of judging of the proper occupation of the persons employed upon 
the collections, or of the propriety or appropriateness of any expenditure which may 
be made; nor can it devote the time requisite to superintend either occupations or 
expenditures. Under such circumstances surprise should not be created if disap- 
pointment were to be experienced in reference to anticipated results from Govern- 
ment patronage. The Institute, as before remarked, possessing neither influence 
or authority, can exercise no control; and although it may, as a consequence, be 
free from responsibility, it can not, in our opinion, be exempt from serious anxieties, 


*This committee also expires on the 4th of every other March, and in consequence 
it can exercise no control, either directly or indirectly, until after the election of a 
new committee at the ensuing December session of Congress. 


176 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


nor from that moral responsibility which the country already attaches to it from its 
charter and from a general impression of the power it is supposed to possess. And 
yet it seems to us that the Institute is the most suitable agent for such purposes. It 
is always present; the very intuition of its organization was to promote matters of 
science, to arrange and preserve specimens of natural history, and to advise on sub- 
jects connected therewith. It ought to be supposed that the Institute possesses 
among its members competent knowledge for such duties, and that it has all the 
devotion and zeal and exclusiveness of feeling which the well-being of matters of 
science requires. During the period when the Institute exercised more influence 
than now, its vigilant vice-president was daily in his rooms, and for hours, advising 
and directing, to the great benefit of its management and to the prevention of many 
an injudicious expenditure. 

In addition to these considerations, the organization of the Institute renders it 
peculiarly deserving of the confidence of Government, as it can offer, as an agent for 
government property and government expenditures, a board of its own officers. 

The officers of the Institute consist of a president, vice-president, two secretaries, 
one treasurer, and twelve directors. Six of these twelve direetors are the heads of 
Government Departments, namely, the Secretary of State, the Secretary of the 
Treasury, the Secretary of War, the Secretary of the Navy, the Attorney-General, 
and the Postmaster-General. These are directors e2 officio, and constitute the 
Departments through which all Government expenditures are made. Six others are 
elected by the Institute from among its members. These six at present are the 
Hon. Mr. Woodbury, the Hon. Mr. Preston, Mr. Dayton, Fourth Auditor; Commo- 
dore Warrington, of the Navy; Colonel Totten, of the Corps of Engineers, and 
Colonel Abert, of the Corps of Topographical Engineers.* 

These are the whole of those who are recognized by the charter as ‘‘ Officers of the 
Institute,’? and constitute, by the charter, ‘‘a board of management for the fiscal 
concerns of the Institute.”’ 

The whole board consists of seventeen, five of which are the officers named, six are 
the heads of the Government Departments, e2 officio directors, and six are elected 
annually from the body of members. Now, as it is hardly within the verge of pos- 
sibility that the president, vice-president, secretaries, and treasurer of the Institute 
will be filled by any other than men of known fitness and good character, so is it 
impossible that eleven (adding the six ex officio directors), a majority of the board, 
can fail to deserve the fullest confidence of the Government. Then if we look to the 
six elected directors and reflect for a moment upon the palpable and decided inter- 
ests of the Institute, and upon the vocations of its members, it is a probability so 
remote that it may be considered an impossibility that a great majority of this 
board of management can ever be other than persons deserving of confidence, holding 
important public places and in the employ of Government. 

Now, then, if the Government were to place the control of its collections and of 
the appropriations for arranging and preserving them under this ‘‘ board of manage- 
ment,’’ it would be placing its property and funds where all its other property and 
funds are placed, namely, under its own officers and under accustomed and long- 
established responsibilities. But these officers are also officers of the Institute; there- 
fore, to place this property under that board would also be to place it under the 
Institute. 


«Since this paper was written a new election of directors has taken place, namely, 
on the 25th January, 1843, when the Honorable Mr. Walker was chosen in the place 
of the Honorable Mr. Preston, who could no longer attend, and Commodore Maury, 
of the Navy, was chosen in the place of Commodore Warrington, who was unwilling 
to serve. 


The Genests of the United States National Museum. 177 


Upon this plan the Institute would be made to fulfill the objects of its organiza- 
tion, the most appropriate organ would be selected by the Government, and the 
Government would, in the persons of its own officers, retain its just control over 
its own property. 

If it should be said that this board of management can be controlled by directors 
of the Institute, the answer is easy. It would be worse than idle for the Institute 
to come in conflict with the Government or hazard a loss of its confidence, and it is 
not fair to suppose, against all experience, that the small portion of common sense 
necessary to avoid such a consequence would not be possessed by the Institute or 
that it would be unmindful of its own palpable interests. 

Moreover, if this board of management should be required to lay a statement of 
its proceedings annually before Congress, it would be held to the established respon- 
sibility of the different Government Departments, and be subject, like those, to have 
its course and conduct investigated and corrected. 

Such a plan would also preserve that union between the Government and the Insti- 
tute collections so desirable and so essential to the prosperity of both. 

It has been intimated to us that there was a desire to separate these and to form 
a distinction between the Exploring Squadron and the Institute collections. A course 
more fatal to the prosperity of both collections and to the great objects for which 
the Institute was chartered, could not well have been imagined. 

All the collections in the care of the Institute, from whatever sources received, are 
either now the property of the Government or must, by our charter, eventually be- 
come so. Theyare the results of various donations from foreign ministers and con- 
suls abroad ; from foreign institutions and foreign governments; donations from 
domestic institutions and from citizens of our own country; donations from officers 
of our Army and Navy, the results of the official circulars from the War and Navy 
Departments; and deposits from individuals and from the different departments at 
Washington. Let the opinion once get abroad that contributions from these various 
sources are not to receive from the protecting hand of the Government that atten- 
tion which their preservation and arrangement require; let it once be supposed 
that all these are to be neglected and those only of the Exploring Squadron to be cared 
for, and the consequence will soon be felt by the degenerating of the collection from 
a great and increasing storehouse of all that our own and other countries can 
furnish, to that of a small museum, forever limited to the results of the Exploring 
Squadron. 

Far be it from our intention, by these remarks, to undervalue the collection from 
the Squadron. We are too sensible of its excellence and too conscious of the aid it 
has been to the Institute to entertain any such idea, and we fully and most highly 
appreciate the intelligent labor and industry of its collectors. But its specimens 
neither exhaust our admiration or our wants, nor render us insensible to the highly 
valuable and continually increasing supplies from other sources, nor relieve us from 
the conviction that upon other sources we must principally rely, if our desire be to 
extend the collection to a point worthy of the national character or of comparison 
with similar institutions in other countries. 

In justice to the Institute it should also be borne in mind that but for its efforts 
these very specimens from the Exploring Squadron would have been scattered, we 
know not where; and but for those efforts the scientific describer might have searched 
in vain for a specimen upon which to found a description or to prove a discovery. 
It is to the Institute, chiefly, that those who gathered these specimens are indebted 
for the present collected results of their great industry and intelligence. 

Second. The next matter which we desire to bring to your notice is the right of 
disposing of duplicate specimens. Our efforts to exchange have been paralyzed for 
the want of this right. The Institute is now seriously indebted to foreign govern- 


NAT MUS 97, PT 2 


I2 


175 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


ments, to foreign and domestic institutions, and to individuals, on the principle of 
exchanges, because the Institute has not the right to dispose of specimens, although 
its cases are loaded with duplicates. The collections of the Government being placed 
in the Institute on deposit, the committee upon exchanges have not felt themselves 
at liberty to use a specimen. We have heard with extreme regret that it is con- 
templated to give all duplicates back to the collectors. Such a course, in our opinion, 
would be ruinous in the extreme, as it would destroy one of the great means of 
increasing the collection by a system of exchanges. And as these collectors were 
amply paid for their labors, we can see no reason for such a course in justice or 
equity. Nor can we believe that such a course is desired by the scientific corps of 
the Expedition, for, while other men of science are daily making collections, at their 
own expense, and sending them to the Institute, many as presents, some in expecta- 
tation of exchanges, it would place the gentlemen of this corps low in the scale of con- 
tributors to science if, after having been so long and so liberally paid for their labors, 
they should yet desire the result of these labors to be given back tothem. Moreover, 
we have understood that by far the greater number of these specimens were actually 
bought by the collectors from funds furnished by the United States. We can see, 
therefore, no reason whatever that they should be returned unless the Government 
is disposed to abandon all idea of forming an enlarged scientific and interesting 
National Museum. 

From our remarks, then, it will appear that, in our judgment, there are serious 
defects in the present condition of affairs which require to be remedied: one, in the 
absence of a responsible and adequate supervision of the arrangement and preserva- 
tion of the collections and of the persons and expenditures in reference thereto; the 
other, in the absence of authority to dispose of duplicates. These defects can be 
properly remedied only by legislative provision. 

We desire it to be distinctly understood that our reasoning has no reference to the 
publication of the results of the voyage, but is limited solely to the preservation, 
arrangement, and exhibition of the collections. We think, however, that the Insti- 
tute might also be able to give acceptable opinions, even in reference to the publica- 
tion—its form and style of execution. But as there is an anxiety to possess this power 
by others, and as it is already placed elsewhere, we do not seek to interfere with it, 
not doubting that in all its parts it will equal similar publications by other govern- 
ments, and justify the anticipations which are now entertained of it by the learned 
world. 

Having thus expressed our general views on these several subjects, we will con- 
clude by an effort to condense them ina manner that will admit of their being incor- 
porated in a law. 

This law should, in our opinion, contain provisions investing— 

First. The board of managers of the National Institute with the custody of all the 
Government collections which have been received or which may hereafter be received 
from the Exploring Squadron or other sources, with authority to make all necessary 
arrangements to preserve or exhibit the same, to regulate, under the supervision of 
the President of the United States, the number and compensations of persons employed 
on said duties, and to superintend the public disbursements in relation thereto. 

Second. To authorize the said board to exchange any of the duplicates of said col- 
lections with other institutions, or with State collections, or with individuals; and 
to require the board annually to lay before the President of the United States, to be 
by him laid before Congress, a full account of their proceedings under this law. 

Third. To direct the said board to furnish to the persons who shall be employed in 
thewriting or publication of the voyage and discoveries of the Exploring Squadron ~ 
all desired facilities.* 


* Copied from original draft of Colonel Abert. 


Report of U. S. National Museum, 1897. Part II PLATE 29. 


GEORGE WILLIAM FEATHERSTONHAUGH. 


The Genests of the United States National Museum. 179 


NOTE D: 

WASHINGTON, March ro, 1843. 
Hon. ROBERT J. WALKER, 

United States Senator. 

DEAR SIR: We beg leave to call your attention to Senate Document No. 233, of 
the 28th ultimo, being a report made by the Hon. Mr. Tappan, as from the Joint 
Comunittee of Congress on the Library, to which had been referred ‘‘A bill for the 
preservation of the collection of natural curiosities furnished by the Exploring Squad- 
ron, and from other sources,’’ together with ‘‘remarks submitted by Mr. Markoe and 
Colonel Abert.’’ 

The ‘‘remarks’’ to which the ‘‘report’’ refers were made, as you will recollect, 
and, as is distinctly stated in the first paragraph of them, at your request, were intended 
to satisfy your mind of the propriety of the measure we wished you to befriend, and 
were addressed to you not only as the well-known friend and advocate of the Insti- 
tute, but also as the chairman of one of its important committees, and as a director 
and consequently member of the board of management. ‘They passed into the 
hands of the committee, of which Mr. Tappan is a member, without any desire on 
our part, and without our knowledge (certainly, however, with no unwillingness 
that they should be read by the whole world), and, under these circumstances, we 
respectfully submit to you whether the attack upon us by the Hon. Senator has not 
been as unprovoked as a referenceto our remarks will prove it to have been unmerited. 

We can not suppose, as Mr. Tappan supposes, that you had not read our ‘‘remarks’’ 
before you laid them before the Library Committee ; and therefore take it for granted 
that you did not perceive the ‘‘direct insult’’ to the committee which is so palpable 
to Mr. Tappan, or you would not have consented to be the medium through which 
the insult was conveyed. On the contrary, we have every reason to suppose that 
you had made yourself perfectly acquainted with the character and scope of our 
‘‘remarks’’—remarks hastily put together, and meant to afford hints and memoranda 
for your consideration and use, to illustrate the necessity or advantage of the 
measure recommended. They were certainly not intended or calculated to give 
offense in any quarter. We will therefore occupy your time by pointing to two para- 
graphs only of the ‘‘ report’? which we quote in answer to two serious allegations 
made against us by the Hon. Senator. You will judge whether they have any just 
foundation. 

Mr. Tappan says: ‘‘ The case presents two officers of the Government, one at the 
head of a bureau, the other a clerk in one of the public offices, who ask as a matter 
of right that they should have the supervision of a very important literary and scien- 
tific work, the publication of which Congress has thought proper to intrust to one 
of its regular committees.”’ 

We must deny that any such case is presented, or that it can be even inferred from 
our ‘‘remarks.’’ Our ‘‘remarks’’ on this subject were as follows: ‘‘ We desire it to 
be distinctly understood that our reasoning has no reference to the publication of the 
results of the voyage, but is limited solely to the preservation, arrangement, and 
exhibition of the collections. We think, however, that the Institute might be able 
to give acceptable opinions even in reference to the publication, its form, and style 
of execution. But as there is an anxiety to possess this power by others, and as it 
is already placed elsewhere, we do not seek to interfere with it, not doubting that in 
all its parts it will equal similar publications by other governments, and justify the 
anticipations that are now entertained of it by the learned world.” 

You are well aware that there are appropriations of two distinct characters in 
respect to the Exploring Squadron and the publication of its results (the Hon. Mr. 
Tappan does not appear to be aware of this, in our judgment, to have kept this dis- 
tinction in his mind): One for the publication of the history of the voyage, the 


180 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


narrative and scientific descriptions; the other, for the preparation, preservation, and 
exhibition of the collections. It is the latter one that we have ever manifested a 
desire to see placed under the control of the Institute, which it appears to us isa 
most suitable agent for such purposes, and the more particularly as these collections 
had been placed by the Executive under its care. 

The other allegation against us by Mr. Tappan is, in our opinion, equally incor- 
rect. He says: ‘‘But the great point with Messrs. Abert and Markoe seems to be to 
get hold of the appropriations made by Congress to enable the committee to execute 
the law.”’ ; 

The law to which Mr. Tappan refers relates to the publication of the proceedings 
of the Expedition; the remarks made by us relate to a system for the preservation 
and exhibition of the collections. 

Our remarks on this head were: ‘‘That the Institute should be the organ of the 
Government in the arrangement and preservation of its collections, and in the super- 
vision of the appropriations which the Government may make for those purposes.” 
We speak of the Institute, of which we are merely members, and of the ‘‘ board of 
management,” of which we are but two out of seventeen. To this ‘“‘ board of man- 
agement’? we think the power appropriately belongs, and in its hands we hope yet 
to see placed the management of whatever relates to the arrangement, preservation, 
and exhibition of the collections. It is clear to us that no better arrangement could 
be made with the superintendence of the publication, and in the appropriation which 
belongs to it (duties assigned to the Library Committee by law) we have not ex- 
pressed a desire to interfere, and forbear, as we have forborne, to make any remarks 

upon them—except to express the natural hope that the wishes and opinions of the 
naturalists themselves will be consulted and their opinions be allowed a proper 
weight. 

Our ‘remarks’ in continuation of the above quotation were: ‘‘ The organization 
of the Institute renders it peculiarly deserving of the confidence of the Government, 
as it can offer as an agent for Government property and Government expenditures a 
board of its own officers.”’ 

“The officers of the Institute consist of a president, vice-president, two secre- 
taries, one treasurer, and twelve directors. Six of these twelve directors are the 
heads of the Government departments, namely, the Secretary of State, the Secretary 
of the Treasury, the Secretary of War, the Secretary of the Navy, the Attorney- 
General, and the Postmaster-General. These are directors, ex officio, and constitute 
the departments through which all Government expenditures are made. Six others 
are elected by the Institute, from among its members. These six at present are 
the Hon. Mr. Woodbury, the Hon. Mr. Preston, Mr. Dayton, Fourth Auditor; Com- 
modore Warrington, Colonel Totten, of the Corps of Engineers, and Colonel Abert, 
of the Corps of Topographical Engineers.”’ 

“These are the whole of those who are recognized by the charter as ‘ officers of 
the Institute,’ and constitute by the charter ‘a board of management of the fiscal 
concerns of the Institute.’”’ 

The quotations speak for themselves, and we will trouble you with but few more 
remarks. Mr. Tappan, in the beginning of his report, most truly says that “The 
remarks of Messrs. Markoe and Abert are not to be considered as the act of the 
National Institute.’’ The ‘‘remarks”’ neither purport nor pretend to be the act of 
the Institute. And moreover we beg leave further to say that neither are Messrs. 
Abert and Markoe the ‘‘board of management for the fiscal concerns of the Insti- 
tute,” under the supervision of which they suggested the expediency of placing the 
appropriations which Government might make for the arrangement and preservation 
of its collections. 

It also seems to have given offense to the honorable gentleman that we should 
have proposed in our remarks ‘‘to furnish to the persons who shall be employed in 


The Genesis of the United States National Museum. 181 


the writing or publication of the voyage and discoveries of the exploring squadron 
all desired facilities.’ We really are at a loss to perceive the offensive matter in 
this sentence. It has no allusion to the Library Committee, for they were neither to 
write nor to publish. The law invested them with power to enter into contract for 
the publication, and each member of the scientific corps of the squadron would, we 
presume, be required to furnish the narrative of his observations. The persons 
therefore employed in the ‘‘ writing or publication of the voyage’’ were these scien- 
tific men and the contractors. If furnished with all desired facilities it would be 
all they ought to have, all they could want, and if furnished by the Institute there 
would be some agent responsible for the specimens and interested in seeing that 
they were returned after being taken out of the building by either the describer, the 
engraver, or the publisher. The Library Committee expired on the 4th of March, 
and there will be no committee until after a new election by the next Congress. We 
believe the committee can not appoint an agent to have a longer existence than 
itself; hence, appeared in our judgment the propriety that the Institute should be 
invested with the care of the collection. 

Had the Hon. Senator published our ‘‘remarks’’ with his ‘‘report,’’ as was due 
in all fairness, this letter would have been unnecessary, for the ‘‘remarks”’ contain, 
in our opinion, ample refutation of the errors of the ‘‘report.’’ We deem it wholly 
unnecessary, also, to point out to you other inconsistencies and mistakes into which 
the Hon. Senator has fallen, and which have been, on his motion, published in his 
“‘report’’ to the Senate. 

We rather limit ourselves, in conclusion, to soliciting your advice as to the best 
mode of correcting the erroneous impressions which the language of the Senator is 
calculated to make upon the public. 

We remain, dear sir, with great esteem and respect, your most obedient servants. 


LETTER FROM THE HON. MR. PRESTON TO COLONEL ABERT AND MR. 
MARKOE. 


CoLUMBIA, SOUTH CAROLINA, April, 7843. 


My Drar Sir: Having had ample occasion to witness the devotion which you and 
Colonel Abert have manifested to the National Institute, you may imagine the sur- 
prise and mortification with which I have seen the total misconception of your 
motives and conduct in regard to it in Mr. Tappan’s report to the Senate. To the 
unwearied and enthusiastic exertions of yourselves and a few other gentlemen, ani- 
mated, as it seemed to me, by nothing but a pure love of science, that institution 
was mainly indebted for its origin and the eminent success which has attended it 
from the beginning. I can say with entire certainty that my own interest in it was 
stimulated and sustained by you, and that I was continually made ashamed of how 
little I felt and how little I did, while I saw the unabated zeal and unrecompensed 
labour which you bestowed upon it. While I wished well to the Institute from a con- 
viction that it would promote the advancement of science, you and he particularly 
devoted yourselves to it with that deep enthusiasm which a more intimate knowledge 
can alone excite, and upon which all scientific projects must depend for their success. 
Men in public station or the munificent rich may contribute the means, but the vital 
principle of all such institutions is found in the hearts of those who are willing to 
work night and day, and whose labour is a labour of love. I was deeply impressed 
that the Institute had found in you and Colonel Abert precisely such agents, and my 
high hopes of its ultimate success arose from the fact that it had found such. I by 
no means mean to say that there are not associated with you other gentlemen equally 
impelled by as earnest and disinterested motives, but this I will say, that a vast deal 
of the labour was thrown upon you two, and that, to my mind, the discretion and 


182 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


wisdom of the Institute was evinced in the selection of such agents. I speak of 
Colonel Abert and yourself especially because you and he are made the subject of a 
most unmerited attack. 

It is with great pleasure that I bear this testimony in your behalf. If I had been 
in the Senate when the report was made I think I would have been able to satisfy 
Mr. Tappan of the mistake into which he had fallen, but at all events I would have 
put upon record my opinion of the purity of purpose and the wisdom of the plans 
which have characterized the conduct of Colonel Abert and yourself throughout. 

I am entirely satisfied that if the government collection derived from the explor- 
ing expedition, or from any other source, be not to a great extent subject to the 
control of a scientific association, or of men animated by a philosophic spirit, which 
spirit alone brings them to the task, it will not increase and will be dilapidated. 
Our government is peculiarly incapable of a proper superintendence of scientific 
institutes. In the first place, it may be said that it has no constitutional power, and 
if it had, the tenure of office is so liable to change, that in a department so removed 
from interests of intense excitement, negligence and decay would soon creep in. It 
therefore seems to me from the beginning that accessions to science, incidentally 
made, like the collections of the exploring expedition, should be deposited for 
arrangement, preservation, and exhibition with such a society as the National Insti- 
tute, the government retaining the property while the Institute has the use of it, or 
rather while the Institute makes it useful to the public. Without some such 
arrangement the Government will find that its valuable specimens will be lost or 
moulder away in forgotten boxes, or become a mere mass of rubbish. 

I am persuaded that Mr. Tappan, upon such explanations as you and other gentle- 
men in Washington can give him, will perceive the injustice of his remarks. He has 
an earnest love of science and literal learning of all sorts, and without some obvious 
misconception can not fail to sympathize and cooperate with gentlemen who with 
such singleness of purpose and such broad intelligence as yourself and others of our 
friends of the Institute have at heart the same objects with himself. 


Iam, my dear sir, your obedient servant, 
: Wm. C. PRESTON. 
FRANCIS MARKOE, jr., Esq. 


SPRINGWELLS (NEAR DETROIT), May 78, 7843. 
Col. J. J. ABERT. 

DEAR SIR: I have read with much interest, but not without some pain, the pam- 
phlet you had the goodness to send to me. I regret that anything should have oc- 
curred unpleasant to you, and especially in any matter in which the Library Commit- 
tee should have participated. I do not remember the day when ‘‘the remarks”’ of 
yourself and Mr. Markoe were submitted in the Senate by Mr. Walker and referred; 
but my impression is that by reason of accident or delay in some of the officers of 
the Senate they did not reach the committee until more than a week after they were 
referred; and when taken up in committee the session had approached very nearly 
its termination. I do not remember whether, when so taken up, they were read zz 
extenso, but the ‘‘bill’? which accompanied them was read and its principle dis- 
cussed. The committee was, I believe, unanimous in its opinion that it was not 
expedient to pass the bill—if at any time, certainly not until the Library Committee 
should have fully executed and terminated the trust committed to it by law. Very 
much inconvenience and embarrassment had already grown out of a confliction of 
an alleged power of control and direction, especially in relation to the ‘‘specimeus 
of natural history,’’ etc., collected, and in respect to which it has been made the 
duty of the Library Committee to cause to be prepared the appropriate publications. 

Great responsibility must grow out of the execution of those powers, for a wide 
discretion must of necessity be exercised. Without expressing any opinion as to 


Report of U. S. National Museum, 1897. Part II. PLATE 30 


WILLIAM FERREL. 


The Genesis of the United States National Museum. 183 


what disposition should finally—and after the powers of the Committee in the matter 
shall have ceased—be made of those rare, rich, and beautiful materials, it remained 
the undivided opinion of the members of the Committee, I believe, that while those 
powers and correlative duties existed it was necessary that those materials should 
continue in the entire control of the Committee. 

This conclusion being come to, the whole subject of the bill, ‘‘remarks,”’ etc., 
was cominitted to Mr. Tappan, as a subcommittee, with directions to prepare and 
make report accordingly. 

After this last measure was adopted in Committee I believe the Committee did not 
meet again; but it was certainly understood that Mr. Tappan should report to the 
Senate this result. 

With respect to the doubt which had been raised as to whether all the powers 
of the Library Committee continued after the 3d of March, I hazard nothing, I 
believe, in saying that in analogy to the case of certain officers of Congress, those 
powers were believed by the Committee (on which, as you are aware, there were 
some professional gentlemen of very high standing) to continue during the recess, 
and it was in corroboration of that opinion asserted that always since the foundation 
of the Government the same construction had been put upon the Constitution and 
the powers of Congress. In conformity with that view I have been required, as 
chairman of the Joint Committee, to draw, in the name of that Committee, upon the 
funds subject to its order, for sums of money for books, salaries, compensations, 
etc., since the close of its last session. How else could the law be executed or 
justice done? 

I trouble you with this long detail, my dear sir, because of the personal esteem 
and respect which, I beg leave to say, I entertain for you individually, and because 
I very sincerely regret that anything should have occurred in this matter tending to 
wound your feelings or to give you pain. 

As chairman of that most highly respected Committee, whose proceedings have 
been the subject of comment, it may perhaps be esteemed indelicate in me to have 
made this exposition without its previous sanction. Please, therefore, consider this 
letter as intended for yourself alone. 


I remain, with sincere respect, yours, 
WM. WOODBRIDGE. 


NOTE E. 


JANUARY 21, 1845. 


Str: I have the honor of transmitting to you the memorial of the National Insti- 
tute, drawn up in pursuance of a resolution of the Institute, of the roth of December. 
And in further obedience to the resolution I have to request that you will do the 
Institute the favor of presenting the memorial to the consideration of the Senate and 
House of Representatives. 

The papers herewith, and which constitute the memorial, are: 

(1) The memorial as directed by the resolution. 

(2) The resolution under which the committee acted. 

(3) The memorial of the scientific men at their meeting in Washington during 
last April. 

(4) The memorial of the Institute, of March, 1844. 

Tee Jes ABERT 

Honorable Mr. WoopBRIDGE, 

United States Senate. 

Honorable J. O. ADAMs, 

Flouse of Representatives. 


184 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


i 
MEMORIAL OF THE NATIONAL INSTITUTE. 


To the Honorable the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of 
America in Congress assembled : 


The undersigned, a committee appointed for the purpose of preparing a memorial 
on behalf of the National Institute, to be accompanied by copies of memorials which 
were presented to your Honorable body during the last session, beg leave to submit 
to your consideration the annexed copies of said memorials and to invoke the friendly 
views of your Honorable body to the prayer therein contained. 

An examination of the character of the by-laws and of the proceedings of the 
National Institute will show that among the principal objects of its organization are 
those of forming at the seat of the General Government an extensive museum of the 
natural history of our country in all branches, and affording every possible facility 
for the development of mind in its devotion to the sciences and the useful arts. 
But the experience of a few years of our existence has satisfied the Institute that 
individual means are inadequate to meet the expenses involved in the exhibition 
and preservation of its already extensive and continually increasing collections, and 
for paying the transportation charges of valuable donations daily arriving from all 
parts of the world. 

These collections, valuable and extensive as they are, have been obtained com- 
paratively without cost, and will evidently go without cost to the United States, 
as by the conditions of our charter the Institute, in reference to all its collections, is 
in reality a trustee for the United States. 

Its position and national character have enlisted the most enthusiastic feeling in 
its favor from the institutions and the enlightened men of all countries, evinced and 
daily evincing itself by presents of the most valuable literary works and by dona- 
tions of specimens of natural history and the fine arts. It is to preserve and exhibit 
these and to pay for their transportation, which exceed our ability and for which, 
on behalf of the National Institute, we solicit the aid of your Honorable body on the 
grounds of our position in the District of Columbia, of the national character of our 
organization and action, and the consideration that all the property and collections 
of the Institute must by our charter eventually become the property and collections 
of the Government. 

The Institute will readily acquiesce to any restrictions and safeguard with which 
your Honorable body think proper to protect any aid that may be granted, only 
begging leave to call the attention of your Honorable body to the safeguard already 
established in our charter, which makes the six heads of the principal Departments 
of the Government directors of the ex officio of the board of managers of the 


Institute. ; 
ABERT, Chairman, 


Jenl: 

J. T. SULLIVAN, 

T. SEWALL, M. D., 
M. THomMAsS, M. D., 
W. W. SEATON, 
jC BRENT, 


: Committee. 
JANUARY 21, 1845. 
i: 


At a meeting of the National Institute, held December 9, 1844, the corresponding 
secretary (Mr. Markoe) offered the following resolution, which was, on motion, unani- 
mously adopted: 

Resolved, That a committee of six persons be appointed by the Chair to prepare 
a memorial to Congress in behalf of the National Institute, to be accompanied by a 
copy of the memorials which were presented at the last session; and that the com- 


The Genesis of the United States National Museum. 185 


mittee request the Hon. Levi Woodbury to present it to the Senate, and the Hon. 
John Quincy Adams to present it to the House of Representatives, at the present 
session, 

Whereupon, the Chair appointed the following gentlemen to constitute the com- 
mittee: Colonel J. J. Abert, John T. Sullivan, Doctor Sewall, Doctor Thomas. Messrs. 
Seaton, and J. C. Brent." 


Ue 


MEMORIAL OF THE FRIENDS OF SCIENCE WHO ATTENDED THE APRIL 
MEETING OF THE NATIONAL INSTITUTE. 


To the Congress of the United States.—The respectful memorial of the friends of 
Science, assembled at the City of Washington, from various parts of the Union: 


The undersigned have come together at the capital of the United States, at the call 
of the National Institute for the Promotion of Science, with the purpose of commu- 
nicating to each other the facts and reasonings in science which each one’s research 
might have suggested, and of interchanging views and opinions in regard to the 
progress of science in our country. 

While engrossed in this delightful and most profitable communion, we have had 
an opportunity to observe the results of the efforts made by the members of the 
National Institute for the advancement of science. Founded only four years since, 
they have already brought together valuable collections in natural history and in 
the arts. Connecting themselves with the Government, through the heads of Depart- 
ments, who, by virtue of their offices, are directors of the Institute, they have vol- 
untarily imposed restraints upon the operations of the Institute, which will preserve 
its national character and prevent its being tributary to any local or sectional pur- 
pose. By making the Institute merely a trustee for the United States of the prop- 
erty which it possesses, and may hereafter acquire, they have proved that no sordid 
or interested views guided them in framing their constitution. The zeal and indus- 
try shown in making collections, the disinterestedness in the disposition of them, 
would seem to deserve from the Government of the Republic approval and encour- 
agement, The value of the property already collected, although the existence of 
the Institute has been so short, is very great. And yet it has no building for the 
convenient exhibition of its treasures, or even for their safe keeping. And if articles 
of so much interest and value have already been collected, what may not be expected 
from the army, the navy, and friends of science generally, in the long reach of years 
to come, if a suitable place can be provided for their preservation and exhibition. 
But how are the means of providing such a building to be obtained? If attained at 
all for such a purpose by voluntary contributions, it could only be in the midst of 
large and flourishing communities. Local feelings of interest or pride can not be 
transferred, and it is not to be expected that the means to arrange, display, preserve, 
and augment these collections can be procured by voluntary contributions of indi- 
viduals in the District of Columbia, or that they can be procured out of the District. 
There is no civilized nation, however narrow its policy in other respects, which does 
not exhibit some measure of interest in promoting the advancement of human knowl- 
edge. In most countries science receives direct encouragement, and many Govern- 
ments have vied with each other in their efforts to advance this cause. ‘The Govern- 
ment of a country emulous to consider itself among the first of enlightened nations, 
we trust, will not refuse to aid in securing to its capital the benefits of the labors of 
the National Institute. We cordially unite with the resident members of the Insti- 
tute in asking an appropriation in its behalf from Congress. Our only fear is that 
in thus requesting aid for the keeping of what in fact is the property of the Govern- 
ment, we may be considered as asking a boon far below that which the country calls 

. for, and that we ought to urge upon the National Legislature a liberal and plenteous 


«Proceedings of the National Institute, 3d Bull., p. 375. 


186 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


enaowment for a National Institute; and we are only withheld from doing so by con- 
siderations growing out of the present financial condition of the Government. But 
that which we ask is so entirely within the means of Congress, and the urgency of 
its application to preserve what has been accumulated, with so much labor and 
expense, is so great, that we can not but hope the enlightened and intelligent mem- 
bers of Congress will distinguish the present session by the necessary appropriation 
of funds to an object so truly national and so truly republican. 
ELIPHALET Nort, President Union College, Schenectady. 
BENJAMIN F. BuTLER, New York. 
A. H. Everett, President Jefferson College, Louisiana. 
JaMES TALLMADGE, President University of New York, and 
President American Institute, New York. 
JoHn W. DRAPER, Professor Chemistry, University of New York. 
W. W. Maruer, Professor Natural Sciences, Ohio University, 
Athens, Ohio. 
L. R. WiiiiaMs, Professor Natural Philosophy and Chemistry, 
Jefferson College. 
C. Gin, Professor Mathematics, St. Paul’s College, Flushing, 
New York. 
JoHN W. DunBar, M. D., Professor, University Maryland. 
W. A. Norton, Professor Mathematics and Natural Philosophy, 
Delaware College, Easton, Pennsylvania. 
JoHn W. YEomans, President Lafayette College, Pennsylvania. 
JoHN W. Lock#, Professor Chemistry, Medical College, Ohio. 
HENRY R. SCHOOLCRAFT, Delegate New York Historical Society. 
W. R. Assorr, President Georgetown Library Association. 
GRAFTON TYLER, M. D., Georgetown, District of Columbia. 
RicHarRD S. McCuLLou, Professor Mathematics and Natural 
Philosophy, Jefferson College, Maryland. 
JoHN ExLcar, Montgomery County, Maryland 
FRANCIS J. GruND, Philadelphia. 
A. D. CHALONER, M. D., Philadelphia. 
S. C. DonaLpson, Baltimore, Maryland. 
JAMES CURLEY, Professor, Georgetown College. 
ALEXIS CASWELL, Professor, Brown University, Rhode Island. 
JAMES P. Espy. 
EDWARD A. Coox, Wew York. 
A. Tarcorr, Connecticut. 
Wo. STRICKLAND, Philadelphia. 
BENJAMIN HALLOWELL, Maryland. 
Hector HumpuHreys, President St. John’s College, Annapolis, 
Maryland, 
GEORGE TuCKER, Professor, University of Virginia. 
JAMES PREN‘TISS, Vew York. 
RICHARD PETERS, Philadelphia. 
R. M. Parrerson, Philadelphia. 
SAMUEL Hazarp, Philadelphia. 
Exias Loomis, Professor, Western Reserve College, Ohio. 
CHARLES D. CLEVELAND, Philadelphia. 
SAMUEL F. B. Morse, Mew York. 
RICHARD RusH, Philadelphia. 
EDWARD HircucocK, Professor, Amherst College, Massachusetts. 
WASHINGTON, D. C., April, 1844. 


* Proceedings of the National Institute, 3d Bull., p. 386. 


Report of U. S. National Museum, 1897. Part Il. PLATE 31. 


JOHN REINHOLD AND JOHN GEORGE FORSTER. 


The Genests of the United States National Museum. 187 


IV. 
MEMORIAL OF THE NATIONAL INSTITUTE. 


To the Honorable the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of 
America: 


The memorial and petition of the ‘‘ National Institute for the Promotion of Science 
and the Arts,’’ respectfully represent : 

That its members have been induced, by a high setise of the duty to the body whose 
interests they represent, as well as to the great objects which it was the design of its 
creation to promote, to submit to the consideration of your honorable bodies, a state- 
ment of the origin and progress, of the past and present condition, and of the wants 
and exigencies of the Institute. 

The Congress of the Union, after a full investigation of the subject, after duly 
estimating the value and importance of the design of its founders, and the means which 
it contemplated to employ in the accomplishment of those ends, deemed them so far 
entitled to its countenance and favor as to grant to the Institute a charter of incor- 
poration. Some pecuniary aid incidentally followed, and it was made the custodier 
of much valuable property belonging to the Government. ‘This charter, whose date 
is recent, naturally afforded the hope of national protection, thus inspiring every- 
where confidence the moment it was seen, by the acts of Government, that confidence 
was felt at home. 

Under these auspices, the National Institute began its career. Many of the most 
distinguished and illustrious individuals in the nation afforded it their aid and 
encouragement. : 

Its active members were chiefly composed of officers of Government and citizens 
of Washington, who, occupied in their own private concerns, neither men of wealth 
nor mere scholars, proposed to give a portion of their leisure to promote objects in 
which they had no other or ulterior motives and interest than such as were common 
to the nation, and, perhaps, to the whole human family. 

These individuals have, so far, advanced with a success which they could have little 
anticipated, and they now approach the legislature of the Union, and the nation at 
large, with the fruits of their labors in their hands, spreading before those whose 
interests they have undertaken to advance, the results which in so brief a space of time 
they have accomplished, asking that their deeds should be examined and compared 
with their promises, and if they have performed their duty faithfully, and discharged 
the trusts confided to them honorably, zealously, and successfully, that they may be 
encouraged by the only reward they have ever sought, viz, the means of enlarging 
and giving additional efficiency to their patriotic efforts and purposes, They appear 
before your honorable bodies to render an account of their stewardship, and they 
solicit an examination of their proceedings. 

In urging this matter upon Congress, it is not the design of your memorialists to 
present a formal argument to establish, either the constitutional authority of your 
honorable bodies to confer upon the National Institute that pecuniary aid which 
they so urgently need, or the expediency of so applying any portion of the public 
patronage. ‘They believe that Congress is fully competent to the ascertainment and 
decision of all questions of this character. While, therefore, your memorialists 
abstain from entering into any discussion of constitutional questions, submitting, 
with the most respectful deference, to the judgment of your honorable bodies, they 
feel that they are, in no manner, trenching upon this ground, in exhibiting fully and 
distinctly those facts and circumstances which will furnish the general data upon 
which Congress is to decide. 

The National Institute is composed of private individuals, with no other bond of 
connection than ¢heir common labors as trustees of certain property for the public 
and the Government—a common feeling of interest in promoting scientific and useful 


188 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


information, and the bond of union bestowed upon them by Congress in their charter 
of incorporation. In effecting the designs of their association, they have established 
an extensive correspondence with influential and useful men, men of experience, of 
letters, and of distinguished scientific attainments, not only throughout the Union, 
but throughout the world. In every part of Europe and of the American continent, 
in Asia, and in Africa, we find generous and enthusiastic friends and corresponding 
members ; foreign Governments have evinced their interest by valuable contribu- 
tions, and many of the most distinguished Institutions and Societies abroad are cor- 
respondents and contributors. An aggregate amount of munificence, zeal, learning, 
and adventitious advantage is thus possessed by the Institute, which has already 
yielded substantial results, and holds out assurances of the richest fruits. In further 
illustration of the advantages which are here imperfectly sketched, we submit for 
the examination of your honorable bodies, a communication lately received from 
Paris, with accompanying documents and transactions, exhibiting, in a remarkable 
manner and degree, evidences of interest and good will toward Congress, toward 
the States, and toward the Institute on the part of the Government and people of 
France. 

Through this widespread instrumentality, the Institute has labored to form an 
extensive library and museum, or collection of objects of natural history, a reper- 
torium of facts and contributions to science, documents illustrating history in gen- 
eral, but in an emphatic manner that of our own continent, and specimens of the 
fine arts, of mechanic ingenuity, valuable productions of the vegetable kingdom, 
and materials illustrating the moral and social condition of nations generally, but 
in a more especial manner of our own. From every quarter of the globe valuable 
and various contributions have been transmitted to us. , The gallant officers of our 
army and navy; the diplomatic and consular representatives of the Government 
abroad, the men of learning and science everywhere, have entered with the most 
praiseworthy zeal in the cause, and vied with each other in the number and value of 
their contributions. 

The collection thus made is not designed for, or appropriated to, the exclusive use 
of the Institute, or of any particular class of individuals. It is opened gratuitously 
and daily to the inspection and for the benefit of all. Without cost, the student of 
natural history may here find ample means of improvement in that department of 
science to which his attention has been directed; without cost, the geologist and 
mineralogist are furnished with abundant materials for prosecuting their researches; 
the curious may indulge their predilections, while the man of science is enabled to 
peruse the valuable contributions from learned societies and individuals throughout 
the world. 

In addition to these materials, thus accumulated by the labors of the Institute 
itself, the convenience of the Government has made it the depository and guardian 
of numerous articles of its own property, which are thus exhibited to the public eye 
without trouble to the ordinary officers in the various Departments, and without the 
consequent abstraction ef their time from more peculiar and appropriate duties. 
The interesting collections of Indian portraits and curiosities formerly deposited in 
the War Department; the objects of curiosity and various donations to the Govern- 
ment or to distinguished citizens from foreign countries, once in the State Depart- 
ment, are here shown to the public in connection with much other public property. 

The articles arising from these, and from various other sources which it would be 
tedious to enumerate, already in the custody of the Institute, are of great value, 
and they are increasing with rapidity, and accumulating to an indefinite extent. 

The real owners of these treasures are the Government and the nation. The indi- 
vidual members of the Institute contemplated no interest or property in them, beside 
their trust for the public, beyond what is enjoyed by every citizen in the land, or, 
indeed, every stranger who may feel disposed to use them as a means of indulging a 


The Genests of the United States National Museum. 189 


liberal curiosity or gratifying his love of science. Such of the articles as at any 
time belonged to the Government, remain its absolute and exclusive property. They 
are simply intrusted to the Institute for safe-keeping and public exhibition, and 
may be withdrawn whenever it shall suit the wishes of the owners to dispose of 
them in any other manner, The donations by individuals and public bodies to the 
Institute are substantially in the same predicament. So long as this corporate asso- 
ciation exists, it has the charge, custody, and control of it, as trustee for the Gov- 
ernment; but upon the dissolution of the Institute, the entire mass becomes equally, 
as the other branch of the collection, the absolute and exclusive property of the 
nation. In the meantime, the members wish for no private interest in the collec- 
tion, and if the present charter be not susceptible of the construction, that the whole 
beneficial interest of all the articles is now, as well as at its close, in the Govern- 
ment, they are anxious to have an amendment made to accompany the appropria- 
tion asked for, which shall, at once, regulate the property in that way. For the 
Institute has depended on the Government heretofore, and must continue to rely on 
it, not only for many of the most valuable articles in its possession, but for a place 
to deposit them and a place for their meetings, as well as for some of the means to 
defray the incidental expenses of opening, putting up, and preserving their collec- 
tions. In short, all the property belongs to the Government. ‘The guardians of it, 
under the charter, are chiefly the officers of the Government. The custody of such 
property was heretofore at the public expense. And that such sums should still be 
expended by Congress as would pay for the freight and other expenditures connected 
with it, would be the exercise of no other power than such as has been exercised by 
the Government every year since its organization. 

The individuals who compose the Institute, have, by their pecuniary contributions 
and specific donations, largely aided in augmenting the value of this property, in 
arranging it so as to render it available, and in defraying the expenses necessarily 
attending the execution of the important and responsible trusts confided to them. 
They have thus created, enlarged, and rendered practically useful, the property of 
the Government and of the nation. Their means of usefulness, their capacity to 
extend the benefits of the museum, are limited only by their capacity to meet their 
daily expenses. 

Not only are the Government and the nation the absolute owners of much of the 
property of the Institute, and the beneficiary owners of the residue, but they are also 
the exclusive recipients of the advantage to result from the entire enterprise. At 
this period of the world, and in this enlightened age, it is not necessary to present 
an argument to establish a truth which all history inculcates, that the highest glory 
of a nation, the purest and most durable happiness = a commonwealth, rest most 
upon a moral and intellectual advancement. 

If, in the legitimate execution of those powers which by the Constitution are vested 
in your honorable bodies, collateral results should follow, by which science and lit- 
erature shall be fostered and encouraged among your constituents, and diffused more 
widely through our Union, such consequences will not, we presume, furnish grounds 
of objection to the rightful exercise of power in the breast of any individual. It is 
believed that few are disposed to controvert the lawfulness, while a still smaller 
number will deny the expediency, of the appropriations heretofore made by Congress 
to the literary and benevolent associations of this district and city. None can doubt 
the lawfulness of those provisions which have been, from time to time, made for the 
protection of the property of the nation, and its adequate security and care by the 
erection of suitable buildings for its accommodation, and furnishing proper compen- 
sation to the officers or agents of the Government charged with its preservation and 
improvement. 

All the Institute asks of Congress, then, is an appropriation of a sum sufficient to 
discharge the arrears of expense heretofore incurred, and due by the Institute. An 


190 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


annual appropriation for the necessary purposes of the Association, and the continu- 
ance of the indulgence hitherto granted, of the use of convenient rooms for preserv- 
ing the property and holding the ordinary meetings. 

Annexed to this memorial are various documents, of which the following is a list: 

1. Charter of incorporation. 

2. Constitution and by-laws. 

3. Abstract of proceedings, comprising the contributions, donations, and deposits 
made to the cabinet and library of the Institution since its foundation, with the 
names of the contributors, donors, and depositors. 

4. List of officers, and honorary, resident, paying corresponding, and correspond- 
ing members, and of the societies, institutions, etc., at home and abroad, in corre- 
spondence with the National Institute.' 

PETER ForcE, Vice-President, 
FRANCIS MARKOE, Jr., Corresponding Secretary, 
JoHN K. TOwNSEND, Recording Secretary, 
GEORGE W. RIGGS, Jr., 7veasurer, 
JoHN C. SPENCER, 
JOHN NELSON, 
WILLIAM WILKINS, 
C. A. WICKLIFFE, 
Directors, ex officio, on the part of the Government. 
LEVI WOODBURY, 
R. J. WALKER, 
J. J. ABERT, 
JosEPH G. TOTTEN, 
A. O. DAYTON, 
M. F. Maury, 
Directors on the part of the National Institute. 
WasHINGTON City, March 18, 1844. 


NOTE: F. 
MEMORIAL TO CONGRESS. 


The following appeal was made to Congress at its late session (first session of 
Twenty-ninth Congress) in favor of the National Institute, and was presented to the 
Senate by the Hon. Lewis,Cass and to the House of Representatives by the Hon. 
John Quincy Adams: 


To the Senate and House of Representatives in Congress assembled : 


‘The undersigned would respectfully petition that the memorials” heretofore pre- 
sented to your honorable bodies in behalf of the National Institute may again be 
taken into consideration and the prayers therein be granted. 

In addition to the reasons before set forth in their favor, the undersigned would 
beg leave to state what they most sincerely deplore—the increasing difficulties of the 
Institute. It is becoming entirely impracticable, by mere private contributions and 
taxes, to pay the large incidental expenses attendant on the collection and preserva- 
tion of so much valuable property connected with the advancement of science, litera- 
ture, and the arts. The Institute asks and has asked nothing for the private emolu- 


Proceedings of the National Institute, 3d Bull., p. 383. 
2 Copies of these memorials will be found at pp. 383 and 386 of the Third Bulletin 
of the Proceedings of the National Institute, which accompanies this memorial. 


PLATE 32. 


Report of U. S. National Museum, 1897. Part Il. 


BENJAMIN FRANKLIN. 


The Genesis of the United States National Museum. 191 


ment of its members. It merely seeks means to secure the property coming into its 
custody from time to time so that it may not be injured or lost, and so that it may 
be exhibited and used by the public, as it is dedicated to the public, and the title to 
it is intended to be in the Government. 

For want of pecuniary means all our collections, whether in possession or increas- 
ing by new additions weekly, are in jeopardy; and unless Congress interfere to save 
what is so public in its character, and so peculiarly under its guardianship as is the 
encouragement of matters of this kind within this District, subject to its exclusive 
legislation, the prospect is that the operations of the Institute must of necessity 
cease and the property be abandoned. 

Deprecating, as we do, an event so unfortunate for the cause of science and the 
arts, not only here, but from here in some degree over the whole Union, and not a 
little disreputable to our character abroad, the undersigned would earnestly pray 
that Congress, at an early date, may avert the calamity by taking steps to aid effi- 
ciently in preserving this important public property ; and the more especially do we 
ask this, when, for various reasons, it can be done at moderate expense and in entire 
conformity to the provisions of the Constitution. 

The undersigned respectfully refer to the documents annexed, which exhibit the 
character of the Institute and the course of its proceedings. 

LEVI Woopsury, President, 
PETER Forck, Vice-President, 
FRANCIS MARKOE, Jr., Corresponding Secretary, 
G. W. RIGGS, Jr., Zveasurer, 
ROBERT J. WALKER, Secretary of the Treasury, 
J. J. ABERT, Topographical Engineers, 
J. G. Torren, Engineer Corps, 
M. F. Maury, U.S. Navy, 
A. O. Dayton, Fourth Auditor, 
Directors. 
WASHINGTON, December 16, 1845. 


LIST OF DOCUMENTS ACCOMPANYING THE ABOVE MEMORIAL, 


First Bulletin of the Proceedings of the National Institution for the Promotion of 
Science, established at Washington, 1840: Washington, 1841. 

Second Bulletin, etc., March, 1841, to February, 1842: Washington, 1842. 

Third Bulletin, etc., February, 1842, to February, 1845; also proceedings of the 
meeting of April, 1844: Washington, 1845. 


THE PRINCIPLES OF MUSEUM ADMINISTRATION. 


BY 


GEORGE BROWN GOODE, 
Assistant Secretary, Smithsonian Institution, in charge 
of the U.S. National Museum, 


NAT MUS 97, PT 2 13 193 


THE PRINCIPLES OF MUSEUM ADMINISTRATION: 


By GEORGE BRowN GOODE, 


Assistant Secretary, Smithsonian Institution, in charge of the United States National 
Museum ; Member, National Academy of Sciences ; America Philosophical So- 
ciety ; American Society of Naturalists ; Fellow, American Academy of Arts and 
Sciences ; Corresponding Member, American Institute of Architects ; Société des 
Amis des Sciences Naturelles, Moscow ; Société Zoologique, France ; Zoological 
Society of London, 


ANALYSIS. 
Introduction. 
I. The museum and its relationships. 
II. The resposibilities and requirements of museums. 
Ill. The five cardinal necessities in museum administration. 
IV. The classification of museums. 
V. The uses of specimens and collections. 
VI. The preservation and preparation of museum materials. 
VII. The art of installation. 4 
VIII. Records, catalogues, and specimen labels. 
IX. Exhibition labels and their functions. 
X. Guides and lecturers; handbooks and reference books. 
XI. The future of museum work. 


INTRODUCTION. 


In an article on The use and abuse of museums, written nearly 
fifteen years ago by Professor William Stanley Jevons, it was stated that 
there was not at that time in the English language a treatise analyzing 
the purposes and kinds of museums and discussing the general principles 
of their management and economy. It is somewhat surprising that the 
lack then made so evident has not since been supplied and that there is 
not at the present day such a treatise in the English or any other lan- 
guage. Many important papers have in the interval been printed in 
regard to particular classes of museums and special branches of museum 
work. Notable among these have been the addresses by Sir William H. 
Flower on the uses and conduct of natural-history museums. Among 
the especially significant general papers which had previously been 


* Reprinted from the Annual Report of the Museums Association, 1895. 


195 


196 Memortal of George Brown Goode. 


printed were Edward Forbes’s suggestive essay on The educational 
uses of museums, dated 1853, and the still earlier one by Edward 
Edwards on The maintenance and management of public galleries and 
museums, printed in 1840. 

No one, however, has as yet attempted, even in a preliminary way, to 
formulate a general theory of administration applicable to museum work 
in all its branches except Professor Jevons, who in the paper already 
referred to presented in an exceedingly suggestive manner the ideas 
which should underlie such a theory. 

It is still true, however, as it was when Professor Jevons wrote in 1881, 
that there is not in existence ‘‘a treatise analyzing the purposes and 
kinds of museums and discussing the general principles of their manage- 
ment and economy.’’ With this fact in mind, I have ventured to 
attempt the preparation of such a treatise, and to bring together in one 
systematic sequence the principles which I believe to underlie the policy 
of the wisest and most experienced of modern museum administrators. 

‘My ideas are presented in a somewhat dogmatic manner, often in the 
form of aphorisms, and possibly many of them may sound like truisms to 
the experienced museum administrator. 

I have no doubt that my purpose in preparing this paper will be at 
once understood by the members of the Museums Association. 

I have had two objects in view: 

It has been my desire, in the first place, to begin the codification or 
the accepted principles of museum administration, hoping that the out- 
line which is here presented may serve as the foundation for a complete 
statement of those principles, such as can only be prepared by the coopera- 
tion of many minds. With this in view, it is hoped that the paper may 
be the cause of much critical discussion. Riot 

My other purpose has been to set forth the aims and ambitions of 
modern museum practice in such a manner that they shall be intelligible 
to the persons who are responsible for the establishment of museums, and 
the conduct of other public institutions founded for similar purposes, in 
order to evoke more fully their sympathy and cooperation. 

Museums of art and history, as well as those of science, are discussed 
in this paper, since the same general principles appear to be applicable 
to all. 

The theses proposed are as follows: 


I1—THE MUSEUM AND ITS RELATIONSHIPS. 
A.—THE MUSEUM DEFINED. 


1. A museum is an institution for the preservation of those objects 
which best illustrate the phenomena of nature and the works of man, 
and the utilization of these for the increase of knowledge and for the 
culture and enlightenment of the people, 


Report of U. S, National Museum, 1897. Part Il. PLATE 33. 


The Principles of Museum Administration. 197 


B.—THE RELATION OF THE MUSEUM TO OTHER INSTITUTIONS OF 
LEARNING. 


1. The museum in its effort for the increase and diffusion of knowl- 
edge aids, and is aided by, the university and college, the learned society, 
and the public library. 

2. The special function of the museum is to preserve and utilize 
objects of nature and works of art and industry; that of the library to 
guard the records of human thought and activity; that of the learned 
society to discuss facts and theories; that of the school to educate the 
individual, while all meet together on common ground in the custodian- 
ship of learning and in extending the boundaries of knowledge. 

3. The care and utilization of material objects being the peculiar duty 
of the museum, it should not enter the field of other institutions of 
learning, except to such a degree as may be found absolutely necessary 
in connection with its own work. 

CoMMENT.—For example, its library should contain only such books as are 
necessary for use within its own walls. Its publications should be solely those 
which are (directly or indirectly) the outgrowth of its own activities. Its teaching 
work should be such as can not be performed by other institutions. 

On the other hand, schools may advantageously limit their cabinets in accord- 
ance with the needs of their lecture rooms and laboratories, and the library and the 


learned society should not enter the field of the museum, except in localities where 
museum agencies are not provided. 


C.—THE RELATION OF THE MUSEUM TO THE EXPOSITION. 


1. The museum differs from the exposition or fair both in aims and 
in method. 

2. The exposition or exhibition and fair are primarily for the promo- 
tion of industry and commerce; the museum for the advancement of 
learning. 

3. Of the former, the principal object is to make known the names of 
the exhibitors for their own professional or financial advantage; in the 
latter, the name of the exhibitor is incidental, the thing chiefly in mind 
being the lesson taught by the exhibit. 

4. Into the work of the former enters the element of competition 
coupled with a system of awards by diplomas or medals; in the latter, 
the element of competition does not appear. 

5. The educational results of expositions, though undeniably impor- 
tant, are chiefly incidental, and not at all proportionate to the prodigal 
expenditure of energy and money which are inseparable from every great 
exposition. 


D.—MUSEUM FEATURES ADOPTED IN EXPOSITIONS 


1. Museum methods have been in part adopted by many expositions, 
in some instances to attract visitors, in-others because it has been desired 


198 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


to utilize the occasion to give museum lessons to multitudes to whom 
museums are not accessible. 

2. Those expositions which have been most successful from an educa- 
tional standpoint have been the ones which have most fully availed them- 
selves of museum methods, notably the London Exhibition of 1851 and 
the Paris Exposition of 1889. 

3. Special or limited exhibitions have a relatively greater educational 
value, owing to the fact that it is possible in these to apply more fully 
the methods of the museum. The four expositions held in London in 
the last decade—fisheries, health, inventions, and colonial—are good 
illustrations. 

4. The annual exhibitions of the academies of art are allied to the 
exposition rather than to the museum. 

5. Many so-called ‘‘museums’’ are really ‘‘permanent exhibitions,”’ 
and many a great collection of pictures can only be suitably designated 
by the name “‘ picture gallery.’’ 


E.—TEMPORARY MUSEUMS. 


1. There are many exhibitions which are administered in accordance 
with museum principles, and which are really temporary museums. ‘To 
this class belong the best of the loan exhibitions, and also special exhibits 
made by public institutions, like the Luther ‘‘ Memorial Exhibition’’ of 
1894, the material for which was derived chiefly from the library of the 
British Museum, and similar exhibitions subsequently held under the 
same auspices. 


F.—MUSEUM METHODS IN OTHER INSTITUTIONS—‘‘ MUSEUM 
EXTENSION.”’’ 


1. The Zoological Park, the Botanical Garden, and the Aquarium are 
essentially museums, and the principles of museum administration are 
entirely applicable to them. 

2. An herbarium in its usual form corresponds to the study series ina 
museum, and is capable of expansion to the full scope of the general 
museum. : 

3. Certain churches and ecclesiastical edifices as well as antiquities in 
place, when they have been pronounced ‘‘ public monuments,’’ are sttb- 
ject to the principles of museum administration. 

4. Many cities, like Rome, Naples, Milan, and Florence, by reason of 
the number of buildings, architectural features, sculpture, and other 
objects in the streets and squares, together with the historical houses 
duly labeled by tablets, have become practically great museums and these 
various objects are administered much in the manner of museums. 
Indeed, the number of ‘‘ public monuments’”’ in Italy is so great that the 
whole country might properly be described as a museum of art and his- 


The Principles of Museum Administration. 199 


tory. A government commission for the preservation of the monuments 
of history and art regulates the contents of every church, monastery, and 
public edifice, the architectural features of private buildings, and even 
private collections, to the extent of requiring that nothing shall be 
removed from the country without governmental sanction. Each Italian 
town is thus made a museum, and in Rome the site of the Forum and 
the adjacent structures has been set aside as an outdoor museum under 
the name of the Passegiata Archeologica, Similar Government control 
of public monuments and works of art exists in Greece and Egypt and 
in a lesser degree in the Ottoman Empire, and for more than half a cen- 
tury there has been a commission of historic monuments in France which 
has not only efficiently protected the national antiquities, but has pub- 
lished an exceedingly important series of descriptive monographs con- 
cerning them. 


Il—THE RESPONSIBILITIES AND REQUIREMENTS OF 
MUSEUMS. 


A.—THE RELATION OF THE MUSEUM TO THE COMMUNITY. 


1. The museum supplies a need which is felt by every intelligent com- 
munity and which can not be supplied by any other agency. The 
museum does not exist except among highly enlightened peoples, and 
attains its highest development only in great centers of civilization. 

2. ‘The museum is more closely in touch with the masses than the 
university and learned society, and quite as much so as the public library, 
while even more than the last, it is a recent outgrowth of modern ten- 
dencies of thought. Therefore— 

3. The public museum is a necessity in every highly civilized com- 
munity. 


B.—THE MUTUAL RESPONSIBILITIES OF THE COMMUNITY AND THE 
MUSEUM. 


1. ‘The museums in the midst of a community perform certain functions 
which are essential to its welfare, and hence arise mutual responsibilities 
between the community and the museum administrator. 

2. The museum administrator must maintain his work with the high- 
est possible degree of efficiency in order to retain the confidence of the 
community. 

3. The community should provide adequate means for the support of 
the museum.’ 

4. A failure on the part of one leads inevitably to a failure on the part 
of the other. 


*See Chapter ITI, p. 202. 


200 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 
C.—THE SPECIFIC RESPONSIBILITIES OF THE MUSEUM, 


t. ‘The museum should be held responsible for special services, chiefly 
as follows: 
a. for the advancement of learning. 

To aid learned men in the work of extending the boundaries of 
knowledge, by affording them the use of material for investigation, 
laboratories, and appliances. 

‘To stimulate original research in connection with its own collec- 
tions, and to promote the publications of the results. 

b, For record. 

‘lo preserve for future comparative and critical study the material 
upon which studies have been made in the past, or which may con- 
firm, correct, or modify the results of such studies. Such materials 
serve to perpetuate the names and identifications used by investiga- 
tors in their publications, and thus authenticated, are useful as a 
basis for future investigation in connection with new material. 
Specimens which thus vouch for the work of investigators are called 
types. Besides types, museums retain for purposes of record many 
speciinens which, though not having been used in investigation, are 
landmarks for past stages in the history of man and nature. 


c. As an adjunct to the class room and the lecture room, 

‘To aid the teacher either of elementary, secondary, technological, 
or higher knowledge in expounding to his pupils the principles of 
Art, Nature, and History, and to be used by advanced or professional 
students in practical laboratory or studio work. 

‘To furnish to the advanced or professional student, materials and 
opportunity for laboratory training. 

d, To impart special information. 

‘To aid the occasional inquirer, be he a laboring man, schoolboy, 
journalist, public speaker, or savant, to obtain, without cost, exact 
information upon any subject related to the specialties of the insti- 
tution; serving thus as a ‘‘ bureau of information.,’’ 

e. for the culture of the public, 

‘To serve the needs of the general public, through the display of 
attractive exhibition series, well planned, complete, and thoroughly 
labeled; and thus stimulate and broaden the mind of those who are 
not engaged in scholarly research, and to draw them to the public 
library and the lecture room. In this respect the effect of the 
inuseum is somewhat analogous to that of travel in distant regions. 

2, A museum to be useful and reputable must be constantly engaged 
in aggressive work, either in education or investigation, or in both. 

3. A museum which is not aggressive in policy and constantly improv- 
ing can not retain in its service a competent staff, and will surely fall 
into decay, 


Report of U. S. National Museum, 1897, Part Il. PLATE 34. 


GEORGE GIBBS. 


The Principles of Museum Admintstration. 201 


4. A finished museum is a dead museum, and a dead museum is a 
useless museum. 

5. Many so-called ‘‘museums”’ are little more than storehouses filled 
with the materials of which museums are made. 


D.—THE RESPONSIBILITY OF MUSEUMS TO EACH OTHER. 


1. There can be no occasion for envious rivalry between museums, 
even when they are in the same city. Every good museum strengthens 
its neighbors, and the success of the one tends to the popularity and 
public support of the others. 

z. A system of cooperation between museums is seemingly possible 
by means of which much duplication of work and much expenditure of 
money may be avoided. 

3. The first and most important field for mutual understanding is in 
regard to specialization of plan. If museums in the same town, prov- 
ince, or nation, would divide the field of work so that each should be 
recognized as having the first rights in one or more specialties, rivalry 
would be converted into friendly association, and the interests of science 
and education better served. 

4. An important outcome of such a system of cooperation might be 
the transfer of entire groups of specimens from one museum to another. 
This would greatly facilitate the work of specialization referred to, and 
at the same time relieve each museum of the responsibility of maintain- 
ing collections which are not germane to its real purpose. Such transfers 
have occasionally been made in the past, and there are few museums 
which might not benefit individually, in a large degree, by a sweeping 
application of this principle. If its effect on the attractiveness and 
interest of any local or national group of museums be taken into account, 
as no one can doubt that the result would be exceedingly beneficial. 

5. Another field for cooperation is in joint expenditure of effort and 
money upon labels and catalogues, and in the economical purchase of 
supplies and material. 

CoMMENT.—In the United States, for instance, the iron molds for specimen jars 
used for terra-cotta mounting tablets, and the dies used in rolling the metal guid- 
ing strips for supporting the drawers in specimen cabinets, which have been made 
at considerable expense for the National Museum, are placed without cost at the 
disposition of other museums; drawings and specifications for the construction of 


cases, and many other results of experiment in this Museum are placed at the sery- 
ice of all others. 


6. Still another would lie in the cooperative employment of expert 
curators and preparators, it being thus practicable to pay larger salaries 
and secure better men. 


COMMENT.—The curator of graphic arts in the United States National Museum 
- is the custodian of the collection of engravings in the Boston Museum of Fine Arts, 
giving part of his time to each institution—an arrangement advantageous to both. 


202 Memortal of George Brown Goode. 


Ill.—THE FIVE CARDINAL NECESSITIES IN MUSEUM 
ADMINISTRATION. 


A museum can not be established and creditably maintained without 
adequate provision in five directions: 

(a) A stable organization and adequate means of support. 

(6) A definite plan, wisely framed in accordance with the opportuni- 
ties of the institution and the needs of the community for whose benefit 
it is to be maintained. 

(c) Material to work upon—good collections or facilities for creating 
them. 

(2) Men to do the work—a staff of competent curators. 

(e) A place to work in—a suitable building. 

(f) Appliances to work with—proper accessories, installation mate- 
rials, tools, and mechanical assistance. 


A.—STABILITY OF ORGANIZATION. 


1. The only absolute assurance of permanence for a museum lies either 
in governmental protection, or in a connection with some endowed 
institution of learning, or in special organization with ample endowments. 

2. The cabinets of unendowed societies, or those gathered and sup- 
ported by the efforts of individuals, must inevitably in time be dispersed 
or destroyed. 

B.—DEFINITENESS OF PLAN. 


1. No two museums can be or ought to be exactly alike. Each should 
be devoted to oneor morespecial subjects, and should select those subjects 
not only with reference to opportunity and the needs of the community, 
but also with regard to the specialties of other museums in the same 
region with a view to cooperation. 

2. It is the duty of every museum to be preeminent in at least one 
specialty, be this specialty never so limited. 

3. The specialties or departments of any museum may be few or many, 
but it is important that its plan should be positively defined and limited, 
since lack of purpose in museum work leads in a most conspicuous way 
to a waste of effort and to partial or complete failure. 

4. It will undoubtedly be found desirable for certain museums, founded 
for local uses, to specialize mainly in the direction of popular education. 
If they can not also provide for a certain amount of scholarly endeavor 
in connection with the other advantages, it would be of the utmost 
importance that they should be associated (by a system of cooperation ) 
with some institution which is in the position of being a center of original 
work. 

5. The general character of a museum should be clearly determined at 
its very inception. Specialization and division of labor are essential for 
institutions as wellas forindividuals. Itisonly a great national museum 


meget ES 


The Principles of Museum Administration. 203 


which can hope to include all departments, and which can with safety 
encourage growth in every direction. 

6. Small museums, it is needless to say, can not attempt specialization 
in the same degree as large ones, but the principles just enunciated should 
be constantly kept in view, even by the least of them. 


C.— COLLECTIONS. 


1. The sources of collections are the following: (a) by gift; (0) by 
purchase; (c) by exchange; (@) by collecting and exploration; (¢) by 
construction; (/) through deposit or temporary loan. 

a. By gift. 

Acquisition by gift is a most important source, but very uncertain. 
If a museum has a plan to which it intends to adhere, a large propor- 
tion of the gifts offered to it will be unavailable; while on the other 
hand only a small proportion of the desiderata will ever be thus 
obtained. A museum may properly, by the offer of a large and com- 
plete collection illustrating a subject outside of its plan, be induced to 
expand its scope. In the case of a large benefaction of this kind, 
necessitating extensive changes in installation, there will always be 
careful consideration of the result. It should be borne in mind, 
however, that the random, thoughtless acceptance of proffered gifts, 
which, insignificant in itself, but in the course of a few years by no 
means insignificant in the consumption of space and money for their 
care, may modify the plan of a museum in a most radical manner. It 
requires quite as much judgment and mental effort on the part of a 
museum officer to keep out unsuitable objects as to bring in those 
which are desirable. 


b. By purchase. 

Acquisition by purchase is often the only means of obtaining 
desirable objects, particularly so in the case of art museums, least 
so in natural history museums. Money is especially necessary for 
the filling of gaps in series obtained by gift or otherwise. 


c. By exchange. 

Acquisition by exchange is especially advantageous, since it ena- 
bles a museum to dispose of unavailable duplicate material. When 
exchanges are made with well-conducted museums, there is the addi- 
tional advantage that the materials thus obtained have been studied 
and identified by expert authorities. Little is gained by conducting 
exchanges in a commercial spirit and insisting on too exact valua- 
tions and balancing of equivalents, especially when the parties to the 
exchange are public institutions., Large museums in dealing with 
small ones may often advantageously give largely and receive com- 
paratively little in return, since they not only become disembarrassed 
of useless duplicates not desired by institutions of equal rank, but 


204 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


they are also building up sister institutions which may in time afford 
them much more substantial aid. Exchanges with private collectors 
may well be carried on in the same spirit, since the collector is thus 
encouraged to gather more material, in the midst of which unex- 
pected treasures may come to light, and is also aided to build up a 
private collection which in time will probably fall into the hands of 
some public museum. 

d. By collecting and exploration. 

For all museums save those of art this is usually the most profit- 
‘able and satisfactory, since by gathering fresh material in unexplored 
fields new facts are discovered, science is enriched, and the reputa- 
tion of the institution improved. Furthermore, material is obtained 
in such large quantities that there always remains much in the way 
of duplicate specimens valuable for exchange. A museum which 
carries its activities into unexplored fields secures for itself material 
which will always be unique and unobtainable by others, and thus 
makes itself a center of interest for the entire world. 

The smallest museum can enrich its collections and make contri- 
butions to enlarge others by modest explorations under its own 
walls; it can do much by simply encouraging the people in the adja- 
cent region to save what they accidentally encounter in the course 
of their daily pursuits. Explorations of this kind are preeminently 
the function of the local and provincial museum. 

e. By construction. 

Any museum may do much to enrich its exhibition series by the 
construction of models and the making of drawings and maps and 
by making copies of important objects in its own collections to secure 
material to be used in exchange. Even small museums may do this, 
for extensive workshops are not necessary. A specialist himself 
devoid of mechanical skill may accomplish marvelous things with 
the aid of a patient mechanic. 

J. Through deposit and temporary loan. 

Possessors of private collections will often lend them for purposes 
of exhibition or study, if assured that they will be properly cared 
for. Such loan collections often become permanent gifts. Single 
specimens, or small groups of objects, still more frequently are 
offered on deposit, and such deposits when within the province of 

' the museum should be encouraged. 

CoMMENT.—In the United States National Museum small deposits are received 
for short periods, but large collections, involving trouble and expense in installa- 
tion, only with the understanding that they shall not be removed within a certain 
pericd—never less than two years. 

2. Collections which are incumbered by conditions as to manner of dis- 
position and installation are usually sources of serious embarrassment. 
It is especially undesirable to accept either as a gift or asa loan any 


Report of U. S, National Museum, 1897. Part Il. PLATE 35. 


JAMES MELVILLE GILLISS. 


The Principles of Museum Administration, 205 


unimportant collection with the pledge that it shall be kept intact and 
installed as a unit. The acceptance of any collection, no matter how 
important, incumbered by conditions, is a serious matter, since no one 
can foresee how much these conditions may interfere with the future 
development of the museum. 

3. Gifts, deposits, and cooperation of all kinds may be greatly encour- 
aged by liberal acknowledgment upon labels and in public reports. ‘This 
is but simple justice to the generosity of the benefactor. It is also a legit- 
imate way to gratify a natural and praiseworthy sentiment ; for a collec- 
tion, to the accumulation of which a man has devoted a lifetime, becomes 
so connected with his personality that it is but natural that he should 
wish his name to be permanently associated withit. If acknowledgment 
of this kind is made upon the individual label of each specimen, this will 
usually fully satisfy the desire of the donor that the individuality of his 
gift should be preserved—an arrangement much more satisfactory than 
one requiring that the objects shall be kept together and treated as a unit 
for installation. 

Gifts and deposits may also be encouraged by the fact that the build- 
ings are fireproof, the cases so built as to afford perfect protection, and 
the scheme of installation dignified and attractive. Collections of great 
value may to advantage be afforded accommodations of a specially sump- 
tuous character, and such protection, in case of priceless objects, as is 
afforded by special electric attachments. 

4. Notwithstanding what has been said about the importance of special- 
ization, it is often necessary for a museum to accept collections of objects 
not at all germane to its plan. This is particularly so in provincial 
museums, when valuable private cabinets are offered as gifts. It may be 
impolitic for an institution to refuse such an offer, and it is much less dis- 
astrous to receive a special collection to be installed as a unit than to 
accept numerous promiscuous gifts. In time, in all probability, a collec- 
tion of this kind can be transferred to the custody of some other institu- 
tion in the same town, and the museum which has housed it in the mean- 
time has deserved well of the community by preserving for it a valuable 
possession. 

5. Since the plan and character of a museum is largely determined for 
all time by the nature of the collections which fall first into its possession, 
at the time of its organization, the authorities temporarily in charge of 
such an institution at the time of organization should be exceedingly 
careful in accepting materials which are to serve as a nucleus for its future 
growth. 

COMMENT.—It is not unusual for boards of trustees, having erected a building, to 
proceed at once to partially fill it with showy material before the staff has been 
appointed or a plan considered. This can only be characterized as ‘‘ pernicious 
activity,’’ which is certain to result in more harm than good. A plan having been 


determined upon and a director selected, the collections may be developed at much 
less expenditure and with any degree of rapidity which may be desired, 


206 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 
D.—MUSEUM OFFICERS. 


1. A museum without intelligent, progressive, and well-trained cura- 
tors is as ineffective as a school without teachers, a library without 
librarians, or a learned society without a working membership of learned 
men. 

2. Museum administration has become one of the learned professions, 
and success in this field can only be attained as the result of years of 
study and of experience in a well-organized museum. Intelligence, a 
liberal education, administrative ability, enthusiasm, and that special 
endowment which may be called ‘‘ the museum sense,’’ are prerequisite 
qualifications. 

Each member of a museum staff should become an authority in some 
special field of research, and should have time for investigation and 
opportunity to publish its results. 

3. A museum which employs untrained curators must expect to pay 
the cost of their education in delays, experimental failures, and waste of 
materials. 

4. Noinvestment is more profitable to a museum than that in its salary 
fund, for only when this is liberal may the services of a permanent staff 
of men of established reputation be secured. 

Around the nucleus of such a staff will naturally grow up a corps of 
volunteer assistants, whose work, properly assisted and directed, will be 
of infinite value. 

5. ‘‘Collaborators’’ or ‘‘associates,’’ as well as curators, may be placed 
upon the staff of a large museum, the sole duty of the former being to 
carry on investigations, to publish, and, if need be, to lecture. 

6. Volunteers may be advantageously employed either as curators and 
custodians or collaborators. Such cooperation is especially desirable 
and practicable when a museum is situated in the same town with a col- 
lege or university, or in a national capital where there are scientific 
bureaus connected with the government. Professors in a university or 
scientific experts in the government service often find it of great advan- 
tage to have free access to the facilities afforded by a museum, and are 
usually able to render useful service in return. Younger men in the same 
establishments may be employed as volunteer aids, either in the museum 
or in the field. 

7. No man is fitted to be a museum officer who is disposed to repel 
students or inquirers or to place obstacles in the way of access to the 
material under his charge. 

8. A museum officer or employee should, for obvious reasons, never be 
the possessor of a private collection. 

9. The museum which carries on explorations in the field as a part of 
its regular work has great advantages over other institutions in holding 
men of ability upon its staff and in securing the most satisfactory results 
from their activities. No work is more exhausting to body and mind 


The Principles of Museum Administration. 207 


than the care of collections, and nowhere are enthusiasm and abundant 
vitality more essential. Every museum must constantly obtain new 
material through exploration, and it is better that this exploration should 
be done by the men who are to study the collections and arrange them 
than that this should be placed in the hands of others. The necessity 
of exploration from another point of view has already been spoken of." 

10. Ina large museum staff it is almost essential that certain persons 
should give their attention chiefly to administrative and financial matters, 
thus leaving their associates free from occupation of this description. 
The business affairs of a museum can not be conducted with too great 
promptness and precision. It is desirable, however, that the administra- 
tive officers of a museum should be men who comprehend the meaning of 
museum work and are in sympathy with its highest aims, and that its 
business affairs and scientific work should be controlled by the same 
executive head. 

E.—MUSEUM BUILDINGS. 


1. The museum building should be absolutely fireproof and substan- 
tially constructed; the architecture simple, dignified, and appropriate— 
a structure worthy of the treasures to be placed within. 

2. Above all things the interior should be well lighted and ventilated, 
dry, and protected from dust. The halls should be well proportioned ; 
the decoration simple and restful to the eye. No decorative features 
should be permitted which tend to draw attention from the collections or 
reduce the floor or wall spaces. 

3. While the museum building should be planned with reference to 
the character of the collections it is to contain, the fact that unexpected 
development or rapid growth in some one direction may necessitate the 
rearrangement and reassignment of halls to different departments should 
always be borne in mind. 

4. Since no two museums can be alike, there can be no general uni- 
formity in their buildings. It is manifestly undesirable then that a board 
of trustees should erect a building for a museum before its character is 
decided upon or its staff appointed ; or that the opinion of the architect 
of a museum building should be allowed to overweigh the judgment of 
the experts who are responsible for its utilization after completion. 
Museum architecture affords no exception to the principle that an edifice 
should be perfectly adapted to the purpose for which it isdesigned. No 
architectural effect which lessens the usefulness of the building can be 
pleasing to an intelligent public. 


F.—ACCESSORIES TO MUSEUM WORK. 


1. A well-equipped museum requires as accessories to its work— 
(a) A reference library, for the use of staff, students, and visitors. 


*See Chapter III C., I, d., p. 204. 


208 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


(6) Laboratories for the classification of material, for the storage of 
the study series, and for the use of students and investigators. 

(¢) Workshops for preparation, mounting, and repair of specimens, and 
for the making and adjustment of mounts and cases, and storage rooms 
for material not yet available. (A printing press is an essential feature. ) 

(d@) An assembly hall for public lectures, society meetings, and special 
exhibitions. | 

(e) A bulletin or other official publication to preserve the history of 
its activities, to maintain its standing among similar institutions, to serve 
as a means of communication with correspondents, and to exchange for 
specimens and books for the library. 

2. In addition to local accessories, the opportunity for exploration and 
field work are equally essential, not only because of considerations con- 
nected with the efficiency of the staff already referred to,* but in behalf 
of the general welfare of the institution. Other things being equal, 
exploration can be carried on more advantageously by the museum than 
by any other institution of learning, and there is no other field of 
research which it can pursue to better advantage. 


IV.—THE. CLASSIFICATION OF MUSEUMS. 


Museums may best be classified in two ways—by the character of their 
contents, and by the purposes for which they are founded. 

Under the first category they may be grouped as follows: 

(a) Art museums; (0) historical museums; (¢c) anthropological mu- 
seums; (@) natural history museums; (e¢) technological or industrial 
museums; (/) commercial museums. 

Under the second category they may be classed as: 

(g) National museums; (%) local, provincial, or city museums; (7) 
college and school museums; (7) professional or class museums; (4) 
private museums or cabinets. 

CoMMENT.—In the reference to special museums in this chapter, nothing has 
been further from my idea than to catalogue existing museums. Many of the most 
important are not even referred to by name. I have spoken only of those which 


are especially familiar to myself, and which seem to be the best illustration of the 
idea in connection with which they are named, 


A.-—ART MUSEUMS, 


1. The museum of art is a depository for the sesthetic products of 


man’s creative genius, such as paintings, sculptures, architecture (so far . 


as it can be shown by models, drawings, and structural fragments), and 
specimens of the illustrative arts (such as engravings), and illustrations 
of the application of art to decorative uses. 


*See Chapter III. d., p. 204. 


Report of U. S. National Museum, 1897. Part Il. PLATE 36. 


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The Principles of Museum Administration. 209 


2. The greater art collections illustrate, in a manner peculiarly their 
own, not only the successive phases in the intellectual progress of the 
civilized races of man, their sentiments, passions, and morals, but also 
their habits and customs, their dress, implements, and the minor acces- 
sories of their culture often not otherwise recorded. . 

3. Museums of art, wherever they may be situated, have a certain 
general similarity to each other in purpose, contents, and method of man- 
agement. ‘Those which most fully represent the art of the communities 
to which they belong, other things being equal, are the most useful and 
famous. 


ComMMENT.—Since Cosmo de’Medici founded in Florence, at the beginning of the 
sixteenth century, the Museum of the Uffizi—perhaps the oldest museum of art now 
in existence—every great city in the civilized world has become the seat of a museum 
or gallery of art. Besides the great general collections of art, there are special 
museums devoted to the work of single masters, such as the Thorwaldsen Museum 
in Copenhagen, and the one at Brussels containing only the works of the eccentric 
painter, Wiertz; the Donatello Museum in the Bargello at Florence, and the Michael 
Angelo collections in its Academy of Fine Arts and in the Casa Buonarrotti. 


4. The distinction between art museum and a gallery of art is a valid 
one. It depends upon the system of administration and the character of 
the officers who control it. 


CoMMENT.—The scientific tendencies of modern thought have permeated every 
department of human activity, even influencing the artist. Many art galleries are 
now called museums, and the assumption of the name usually tends toward the adop- 
tion in some degree of a scientific method of installation. The Cluny Museum in Paris 
is, notwithstanding its name, simply a gallery of curious objects. Its contents are 
arranged primarily with reference to their effect. The old monastery in which they 
are placed, affords a magnificent example of the interior decorative art of the Mid- 
dle Ages. 

The Cluny Museum is a most fascinating and instructive place. I would not have 
it otherwise than itis, but it willalways be unique, the solerepresentative of its kind. 
The features which render it attractive would be ruinous to any museum. It is, 
more than any other that I know, a collection from the standpoint of the artist. 
The same material, in the hands of a Klemm or Pitt-Rivers, arranged to show the 
history of human thought, would, however, be much more interesting, and, if the 
work were judiciously done, would lose none of its zesthetic allurements. 

Another collection of the same general character as the one just described is the 
Soane Museum in London. Another, the famous collection of crown jewels and 
metal work in the Green Vaults at Dresden, a counterpart of which may be cited in 
the collection in the Tower of London. The Museum of the Hohenzollerns in Berlin 
and the Museum ofthe City of Paris are of necessity unique. Such collections can 
not be created. They grow in obedience to the action of natural law, just as a tree 
or a sponge may grow. 

The city which is in possession of such an heirloom is blessed just as is the 
possessor of an historic surname, or he who inherits the cumulative genius of gene- 
rations of gifted forefathers. The possession of one or a score of such shrines does 
not, however, free any community from the obligation to form a museum for pur- 
poses of education and scientific research. 


NAT MUS 97, PT 2 14 


210 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


B.—HISTORICAL MUSEUMS. 


1. The museum of history preserves those material objects which are 
associated with events in the history of individuals, nations, or races, or 
which illustrate their condition at different periods in their national life. 

2. Every museum of art and every archeological museum is also a 
museum of history, since it contains portraits of historical personages, 
pictures of historical events, and delineations of customs, costumes, 
architecture, and race characteristics. 


CoMMENT.— Historical museums are manifold in character, and usually of local 
interest. Some relate to the histories of provinces and cities. One of the oldest 
and best of these is the Provincial Museum of the Mark of Brandenburg in Berlin. 
Of the same class are the Museum of the City of Paris in the Hotel Canavelet, and 
the museums of the city of Brussels and the city of Antwerp. 

Others illustrate the early history of a race or country, such as the Musée Gallo- 
Romain at St. Germain, the Romano-German Museum at Mainz, the Etruscan 
museums at Florence and Bologna, the Ghizeh Museum near Cairo, the Acropolis 
Museum at Athens, and the museums at Constantinople. 

Such institutions as the Bavarian National Museum at Nuremberg and the German 
National Museum in Munich have to do with later periods of history, and there are 
throughout Europe numerous collections of armor, furniture, costumes, and archi- 
tectural and other objects, illustrating the life and arts of the Middle Ages and the 
later periods, which are even more significant from the standpoint of thg historian 
than from that of the artist. Important among these are the Royal Irish Academy 
at Dublin, and the Musée des Thermes—the Cluny Museum—in Paris. 


Many of the cathedrals of Europe are essentially either civic or national muse- 
ums, and such edifices as Saint Paul’s and Westminster Abbey belong preeminently 
to the latter class. 

There are biographical museums, either devoted to single men, like the Galileo, 
Dante, and Buonarrotti museums in Florence, or the Goethe Museum in Weimar, 
and the Beethoven Museum in Bonn; to the great men of a nation, as the National 
Portrait Gallery of Great Britain, the German Valhalla at Ratisbon, etc.; or to great 
men of a special profession, such as the Gallery of Artists in the Pitti Museum of 
Florence. 

In this connection would come also collections of autographs and manuscripts 
(like the Dyce-Forster Collection at South Kensington), and collections of personal 
relics. 

Midway between the museum of history and that of biography stands the dynas- 
tic or family museum, such as the Museum of the Hohenzollerns in Berlin, and 
that section of the Kunsthistorisches Museum in Vienna which illustrates the his- 
tory of the Hapsburgs. The Musée Historique de Versailles is similar in its aims. 


C.—ANTHROPOLOGICAL MUSEUMS. 


1. The museum of anthropology includes such objects as illustrate 
the natural history of man, his classification in races and tribes, his geo- 
graphical distribution, past and present, and the origin, history, and 


methods of his arts, industries, customs, and opinions, particularly among 


primitive and semicivilized peoples. 
2. Museums of anthropology and history meet on common ground in 
the field of archzeology. In practice, historic archeology is usually 


a 


The Principles of Museum Administration. 211 


assigned to the latter, and prehistoric archeology to the former. ‘This 
is partly because historical museums, which are usually national in scope 
and unsupported on documentary evidence, treat the prehistoric races as 
extralimital; partly because prehistoric material is studied to best advan- 
tage through the natural history methods in use among anthropologists 
but not among historical students. 


CoMMENT.—Ethnographic museums were proposed half a century ago by the 
French geographer, Jomard, and the idea was first carried into effect about 1840 in 
the establishment of the Danish Ethnographical Museum. In Germany, there are 
anthropological museums in Berlin, Dresden, and Munich, and the Museum fur 
Volkerkunde in Leipzig; in Austria, the Court and the Oriental museums in Vienna; 
in Holland, the Ethnographichal Museum in Leyden, and smaller ones in Amsterdam, 
Rotterdam, and at The Hague; in France, the Trocadero; in Italy, the important 
Prehistoric and Ethnographic museums in Rome and Florence; in Spain, the Philip- 
pine Collections in the Museo de Ultramar in Madrid; and in Hawaii, the Bernice 
Pauahi Bishop Museum at Honolulu. 

In England less attention has been given to the subject than elsewhere in Europe, 
the Christy Collection in the British Museum, the Pitt-Rivers Collection at Oxford, 
and the Blackmore Museum at Salisbury being the most important ones specially 
devoted to ethnography. In the United States, the Peabody Museum of Archeology 
in Cambridge, the collections in the Peabody Academy of Sciences at Salem, and 
the American Museum of Natural History in New York are arranged ethnographic- 
ally, while the ethnological collections in the National Museum in Washington are 
classified on a double system—one with regard to race, the other, like the Pitt-Rivers 
Collection, intended to show the evolution or development of culture and civilization 
without regard to race. This broader plan admits much material excluded by the 
advocates of ethnographic museums, who devote their attention almost exclusively 
to the primitive or non-European peoples. 

Closely related to the ethnographic museum are others devoted to some special 
field, such as the Musée Guimet in Paris, which is intended to illustrate the history 
of religious ceremonial among all races of men—a field also occupied by one depart- 
ment of the National Museum in Washington. Other good examples of this class 
are some of those in Paris, such as the Musée de Marine, which shows not only the 
development of the merchant and naval marines of the country, but also, by trophies 
and other historical souvenirs, the history of the naval battles of the nation, and the 
Musée d’Artillerie, which has a rival in Madrid. 

Of musical museums, perhaps the most important are Clapisson’s Musée Instru- 
mental, in Paris; that in Brussels, and that in the National Museum at Washington. 
The collection of musical instruments at South Kensington has had its contents 
selected chiefly with reference to their suggestiveness in decorative art. 

The Theatrical Museum at the Académie Francais in Paris, the Museum of Jour- 
nalism at Antwerp, the Museums of Pedagogy in Paris and St. Petersburg, are pro- 
fessional rather than scientific or educational, as are also the Museum of Practical 
Fish Culture at South Kensington, the Monetary Museum at the Paris Mint, the 
Museums of Hygiene in London and Washington, and the United States Army 
Medical Museum. 

The value of archzeological collections, both historic and prehistoric, has long been 
understood. The museums of London, Paris, Berlin, Copenhagen, and Rome need 
no comment. In the Peabody Museum in Cambridge, the American Museum in 
New York, the Museum of the University of Pennsylvania, and the National Museum 
in Washington, are immense collections of the remains of prehistoric man in 
America. 


212 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


3. There are many objects now in the custody of art museums, which 
would be more appropriately placed if in the museums of anthropology 
or history. 


CoMMENT.—There are special collections on the boundary line between art and 
ethnology, the manner of best installation for which has scarcely yet been deter- 
mined. The Louvre admits within its walls a museum of ship models. South 
Kensington includes musical instruments, and many other objects equally appro- 
priate in an ethnological collection. Other art museums take up art and armor, 
selected costumes, shoes, and articles of household use. Such objects, like por- 
celains, laces, medals, and metal work, appeal to the art museum administrator 
through their decorations and graceful forms. For their uses he cares presumably 
nothing. Asa consequence of this feeling, only articles of artistic excellence have 
been saved, and much has gone to destruction which would be of the utmost import- 
ance to those who are now studying the history of human thought in the past. 

On the other hand, there is much in art museums which might to much better 
purpose be delivered to the ethnologist for use in his exhibition cases. There is 
also much which the art museum, tied as it often is to traditionary methods of 
installation, might learn from the scientific museums. 

Many of the arrangements in the European art collections are calculated to send 
cold shivers down the back of a sensitive visitor. The defects of these arrange- 
ments have been well described by a German critic, W. Burger. ‘‘Our museums,’’ 
he writes, ‘‘are the veritable graveyards of art in which have been heaped up, with 
a tumulous-like promiscuousness, the remains which have been carried thither. A 
Venus is placed side by side with a Madonna, a satyr next toa saint. Luther isin 
close proximity to a pope, a painting of a lady’s chamber next to that of a church. 
Pieces executed for churches, palaces, city halls, for a particular edifice to teach 
some moral or historic truth, designed for some especial light, for some well-studied 
surrounding, all are hung pellmell upon the walls of some noncommittal gallery— 
a kind of posthumous asylum, where a people, no longer capable of producing works 
of art, come to admire this magnificent gallery of débris.”’ 


D.—NATURAL HISTORY MUSEUMS. 


1. The museum of natural history is the depository for objects which 
illustrate the forces and phenomena of nature—the named units included 
within the three kingdoms, animal, vegetable, and mineral—and whatever 
illustrates their origin in time (or phylogeny), their individual origin, 
development, growth, function, structure, and geographical distribution— 
past and present; also their relation to each other, and their influence 
upon the structure of the earth and phenomena observed upon it. 

2. Museums of natural history and anthropology meet on common 
ground in man. In practice, the former usually treats of man in his 
relations to other animals, the latter of man in his relations to other men. 

CoMMENT.—In most national capitals there are general museums in which col- 
lections representing the three kingdoms of nature are included in one group. 
Among the oldest and most prominent types of this class are the British Museum 
of Natural History in South Kensington, and the Musée d’ Histoire Naturelle in Paris, 
and there are numerous others in the great cities of both hemispheres. 

Among specialized natural history collections, a good type is the Museum of Com- 
parative Zoology in Cambridge, Massachusetts, founded by Agassiz to illustrate the 


history of creation, as far as the present state of knowledge reveals that history, 
which was, in 1887, pronounced by Alfred Russell Wallace to be far in advance of 


PLATE 37. 


Part Il. 


Report of U. S. National Museum, 1897. 


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The Principles of Museum Administration. 213 


similar institutions in Europe, whether as regards the general public, the private 
student, or the specialist. 

Next in order after the zoological sections of the museums in London and Paris, 
stands those of the Imperial Cabinet in Vienna; those in Berlin, Leyden, Copen- 
hagen, Christiania, Brussels, and Florence, and the La Plata Museum in Argentina, 
so rich in paleontological material. 

The best type of the botanical museum is perhaps the Royal Garden at Kew, with 
its colossal herbarium and its special museum of economic botany, both standing in 
the midst of great botanic gardens. The Royal Botanical Museum in Berlin and 
the herbaria of the Imperial Botanical Garden in St. Petersburg are other examples. 

Of specialized geological museums, the Imperial Cabinet in Vienna is a good 
type. The Museum of Practical Geology in London, founded to exhibit the collec- 
tions of the survey of the United Kingdom, and also in order to show the applica- 
tions of geology to the useful processes of life, is another type of the same class. 
The department of economic geology in the Field Columbian Museum of Chicago— 
an outgrowth of the exposition of 1893—represents this idea in the New World. 

Besides the great special museums, there are the museums of local natural history, 
intended to show the natural history of a special region, or it may be to illustrate its 
resources in some restricted branch. 

The Royal Museum of Vertebrates in Florence, devoted to the vertebrate fauna 
of Italy, is a type of this class, and many local museums are so prominent in some 
special field (such as ornithology or entomology) that their other activities attract 
little attention, 


E.—TECHNOLOGICAL OR INDUSTRIAL MUSEUMS. 


1. The museum of technology or industrial museum is devoted to the 

industrial arts and manufactures, including : 

(1) Materials and their sources. 

(2) Tools and machinery. 

(3) Methods and processes. 

(4) Products and results. 

(5) Waste products and undeveloped resources. 

The interests here treated are thus classified : 

(1) Primary or exploitative industries (as agriculture, mining, or the 

fisheries). 

(2) Secondary or elaborative industries (as the textile industries, the 

ceramic industries). 

(3) Auxiliary industries (as transportation). 

(4) Technical professions (as engineering, war, medicine, engraving). 

The final product of one industry (primary or secondary) may become 

a material or too] in another art industry or handicraft. 

2. Technological museums come in contact with others as follows: 
With the natural history museum in respect to primary materials; 
With the anthropological museum in the matter of tools and processes, 

especially if historical and retrospective collections are undertaken; 
With the art museum in regard to certain products in which a high 
degree of zesthetic merit has been attained; 
With the commercial museum in respect to all products and materials 
used in commerce and manufactures. 


214 Memorral of George Brown Goode. 


. 


3. There is no such thing in existence to-day as a general technological 
museum, conducted upon a liberal plan and doing useful educational 
work. The possibility of establishing such a museum remains to be demon- 
strated. Attempts have been made at the close of various international 
expositions, but without success. 

4. It is possible that experience may show that museum work in this 
field can best be done in connection with museums of natural history and 
anthropology, organizing sections of economic zoology in connection with 
zoological museums, economic geology and botany, respectively with the 
general botanical and geological collections. In this way, at least the 
natural products and the crude materials could be disposed of to advan- 
tage, and the manufactured products, tools, and processes, on the other 
hand, could be shown by the museums of anthropology and art, and in 
connection with the mechanical or patent museums; though, after all, a 
factory in actual operation is the best place to study most modern indus- 
tries. The constantly changing interests of commerce, dependent upon 
changing fashions and the caprice of markets, might safely be left to the 
exposition and fair, or, if need be, cared for by commercial organizations. 
In the city of Philadelphia, for instance, there is a most permanent exhi- 
bition of objects and materials used in the construction and ornamenta- 
tion of houses, kept by the Building Trades’ Association. 


F.—COMMERCIAL MUSEUMS. 


1. The commercial museum has to do with the salable crude material 
and manufactured articles; with markets, means of commercial distribu- 
tion, prices, and the demand and supply of trade. 

2. It may properly be connected with the technological museum, but 
for the fact that its purposes are likely to be more akin to those of the 
exposition or fair, involving a frequent renewal of exhibits in connection 
with commercial changes, and often certain features of competitive 
advertising or display on the part of private exhibitors. 

3. The function of this class of museums is twofold: 

(a) To exhibit to home producers the character and location of foreign 
markets. 

(6) To exhibit to foreign buyers the location and products of the 
home producer. 

4. Although the usefulness of the commercial museum has not yet 
been fully demonstrated, it is conceivable that it might be of great 
service, could it be made the medium of wide international communica- 
tion, and the means of a comprehensive system of exchange, through 
which the collections should be kept up to date and indicate the condi- 
tion of the various markets of the world. 

Essential to the success of such a museum would probably be a bureau 
of information, through which practical knowledge concerning prices, 
shipment, and the quality of products, might be obtained by manufac- 


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The Principles of Museum Administration. 215 


turers and other interested persons, and samples distributed for use in 
experiment and comparison. 


ComMMEN?T.—Examples of commercial museums may be found in the Musée de 
Melle at Ghent; that of the Chamber of Commerce at Liege, founded in 1888, and 
the Ottoman Commercial Museum, established in 1890, at Constantinople. These 
are too recent, however, to afford many lessons. 


G.—NATIONAL MUSEUMS. 


1. National museums contain the treasures belonging to national 
governments and are legitimate successors of those treasure houses of 
monarchs, princes, and ecclesiastical establishments which, until within 
the last two centuries, were the sole representatives of the museum idea. 
Every great nation now has a museum, or a group of museums, more 
or less liberally supported, and intimately connected with the educa- 
tional undertakings of the government; often, when there are several 
great cities under one government, each has its own system of museums, 
and these ferm the national system. 

2. In most countries of continental Europe the collections of the 
national universities form a part of the national museum system and 
are exceedingly efficient when thus administered. 

3. National museums have opportunities which are not often shared 
by those under state control, and their responsibilities are correspond- 
ingly great. They should occupy specially those fields which are not 
provided for in the other museums of the country in which they exist, 
and should not only refrain from competition with these museums but 
afford to them unreserved cooperation. 


CoMMEN’T.—The principal purpose of a national museum must be, as Jevons has 
well said, ‘‘the advancement of knowledge and the preservation of specimens of 
works of art which hand down the history of the nation and the world.’’ In other 
words, to serve as museums of record and research. It is by no means impossible, 
however, for them to render excellent service as educational museums, and quite 
independent of other considerations, they can rarely afford to sacrifice the material 
advantages gained from engaging in educational work. 

A serious obstacle to success in this direction is the vast amount of material which 
they all possess, and the lack of space in which to admit it. This difficulty may be 
partly overcome by a liberal assignment of objects to that portion of the study series 
which is not on exhibition. 

A national museum may not, it is true, advantageously attempt to install its sep- 
arate departments in such manner as to produce the unity of effect possible in small 
specialized museums. This, however, is due to the fact that they are obliged to 
classify their material more strictly, for the attractiveness of a specialized museum 
grows largely from the fact that many illustrative objects are introduced into the 
exhibition series which are not strictly in place. The extreme attractiveness of fish- 
ery exhibitions, for instance, grows from the fact that so many interesting objects 
only incidentally connected with the fisheries may be introduced as a setting for the 
objects directly related to the fisheries. 

A result of the same kind is obtained in the Museum of Practical Geology in 
London, where a selected series of products of all the arts deriving their material 
from the mineral kingdom—glass, pottery, gems, metal work, and many similar 


216 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


groups—are brought in, legitimately increasing the attractiveness of the museum to 
the visitor and its instructiveness to the student. ; 

Though the great general museum can not vie in this respect with the local 
museum, it has a certain advantage of another kind in its very wealth of material, 
for the display of vast collections, assembled from all parts of the earth and covering 
it may be acres of floor space, strictly classified and arranged so as to show mutual 
relationships, affords in itself the most impressive lesson. While in smaller museums 
the study of individual objects may be easier, in those of the other kind there is a 
better opportunity for the study of great general relationships. 


H.—LOCAL, PROVINCIAL, OR CITY MUSEUMS. 


1. To museums of this class belongs the duty of preserving all that 
which is characteristic of the region or city in which they are located. 
Every State or province should have an institution of this kind to care 
for material illustrating its own geology, zoology, botany, and archeology. 
Every city should have an historical collection for memorials of events in 
its history and that of its representative men. 

2. It is legitimate and desirable that local and municipal museums 
should also enter upon general museum work of a scientific and educa- 
tional character. ‘They may form collections of a general character in 
order that their visitors may see and study the unfamiliar products of 
foreign lands, as well as those of local interest. For museums of this 
class, models, casts, copies, and pictures of objects not actually obtainable 
may be used. 

3. It is often advantageous in small communities for the museum and 
public library to be combined under one roof and one management. 


I.—COLLEGE AND SCHOOL MUSEUMS. 


1. Museums of this class are intended for the use of teachers in connec- 
tion with their class room and laboratory instruction and to reenforce the 
library in the no less important work which it performs for the student. 

2. It need scarcely be said that it is impracticable for the smaller teach- 
ing museums connected with schools and colleges to carry out the thorough 
specialization which is attainable in large institutions. Asmall collection, 
however scanty and imperfect it may be, is of great value, not only for 
study purposes in connection with some school or college and for exhibi- 
tion to the local public of a small town, but also as a nucleus for future 
development. 

3. The college or school museum often becomes the local or city museum 
for the locality in whichit is situated, and what has been said about museums 
of the latter class then becomes applicable to the college museum. 


J.-— PROFESSIONAL OR CLASS MUSEUMS. 


1. Professional museums are those formed specially for the use of groups 
of specialists and for the education of specialists. Here belong medical, 


Report of U. S. National Museum, 1897, Part Il. PLATE 38. 


The Principles of Museum Administration. 217 


surgical, and pathological museums; military and naval museums; mechan- 
ical museums (such as those connected with patent offices and the Conserva- 
tory of Arts and Manufactures in Paris); museums for special arts (like 
the Textile Museum connected with the Gobelin establishment, the 
Museum of Porcelains in Sévres, the Museum of Mosaics in Florence), 
and certain scientific museums like that of the Geological Survey of Great 
Britain—the Museum of Practical Geology—the Museo Psicologico in 
Florence, founded by Mantegazza, and many others. 

2. Such institutions, usually under the control of a society, school, 
or specialized bureau, although they may allow inspection by the public, 
do not necessarily undertake general educational work, but may with 
propriety consult first, in all matters relating to administration and 
display, the interests of the class for which they are formed. 


K.—PRIVATE MUSEUMS OR CABINETS. 


t. Such collections undertake work in only one portion of the museum 
field—that of fostering scientific and historical studies—and so long as 
they are fruitful in this direction, the manner in which they are adminis- 
tered concerns only the persons by whom they are controlled. It is well 
that there should be many museums of this kind, and that those who work 
in them should not be encouraged to dissipate their energies in attempt- 
ing to do too much of the work which belongs to institutions of other 
classes and for which they should be held responsible. ‘These are, to all 
intents and purposes, scientific laboratories. 

2. The private collector is of the greatest service to the public museum. 
He can, by the use of private wealth or individual freedom, do many 
things which the officers of a public museum can not. 

3. The private cabinet is the school in which the museum administra- 
tor forms the tastes and receives the preliminary training which fits him 
for his profession. There is much truth in the remark of Jevons that the 
best museum is that which a person forms for himself. If everyone 
could do this, there would be no need for public museums; but since they 
can not, the person who has formed a private collection ought to be able 
to manage one for the use of the public, since he, better than anyone else, 
is able, in considering the needs of the museum visitor, to keep in mind 
that saying which is so useful a guide in museum practice, ‘‘ Put yourself 
in his place.’’ 

4. Private collectors should be encouraged for educational reasons also, 
for it has been frequently remarked that the men who have had in youth 
the training afforded by forming a collection have derived therefrom great 
advantage over others, even though they subsequently pursued commerce 
or the learned professions. 


218 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


V.—THE USES OF SPECIMENS AND COLLECTIONS. 
A.—THE USES OF SPECIMENS. 


I. Specimens are like the types in a printing office. They may be 
sorted in the cases in convenient order, so as to be accessible when 
needed, and may be used to make intelligible almost any train of thought 
or series of ideas, each being available to hundreds of different relation- 
ships. 

2. A museum is rarely justified in exhibiting all its materials; as well 
might a publishing house insist upon using every piece of type in its 
possession in the printing of each book which it issues. 

3. An exhibition series, when properly installed and labeled, is usually 
most effective when limited in extent. 

4. Such a series should not only be limited in extent, but also selected 
and arranged as to produce a certain unity of effect. 


CoMMEN’T.—This principle has been stated by Jevons, who writes: ‘‘ There may 
be many specimens exhibited, but they ought to have some degree of relation that 
they may conduce to the same general mental impression. It is in this way that the 
Thorwaldsen Museum at Copenhagen exercises a peculiarly impressive effect upon 
the multitude of all classes of Danes and Swedes who visit it. This museum con- 
tains in a single building almost the whole works of this great sculptor, Thorwaldsen, 
together with all the engravings and pictures having reference to the same. Very 
numerous though the statues and bas-reliefs are, there is naturally a unity of style 
in them, and the visitor as he progresses is gradually educated to an appreciation of 
the works. In somewhat the same way we may explain the ineffaceable effect which 
certain other foreign galleries produce upon the traveller, especially those of the 
Vatican. ‘This is not due simply to the excellence of any particular works of art, for 
in the Louvre or the British Museum we may see antique sculptures of equal excel- 
lence, but in the principal Vatican galleries we are not distracted by objects belong- 
ing to every place and time. The genius of the classical age spreads around us, and 
we leave one manifestation of it but to drink in a deeper impression from the next.”’ 

The Museo delle Belle Arti in Sienna, the collections in the Monastery of San 
Marco in Florence, the Musée Gallo-Romain at St. Germain near Paris, the Museo 
Borbonico in Naples, the Musée des Thermes in the Hotel de Cluny, the German 
National Museum in Nuremberg, the Museo de Ultramar in Madrid, the Museum 
of Practical Geology in London, all have been successful in maintaining this unity of 
effect. 

A noteworthy example of a museum of limited scope in which unity of effect is 
sacrificed is the Musée Guimet in Paris, although notwithstanding this effect it 
is one of the most interesting and beautiful small museums in the world. In this 
instance it is evidently due to the fact that the original purpose of the museum— 
which was to illustrate the comparative history of religions—has been modified by 
the admission of extensive collections illustrating the arts of the Orient, and that 
these are not separated in their installation from the religious collections. 

Great national museums are usually so hampered in the matter of space that they 
are not able to attain to such unity, and perhaps it is not equally important in these 
great establishments in which popular education is only one of several purposes. 


5. Single or unrelated specimens, though valuable or interesting, are 
in themselves of little moment in comparison with series of much less 
precious objects which unite to teach some lesson to the student or visitor. 


The Principles of Museum Administration. 219 


6. Specimens are often most useful when placed in a reserve or study 
series, to be used by special students or to be exchanged, or given to 
other museums. 

7. Advancement in a museum is effected, not only by accession and 
enlargement, but by the constant substitution of better specimens for 
study and exhibition, by improvements in methods of display and labeling, 
and by publishing contributions to knowledge based upon the collections. 


E.—LHE STUDY SHRIES. 


1. The effectiveness of a museum as an agency for the increase of 
knowledge and for higher education depends upon the maintenance of a 
study series, the administration of which should be upon a plan quite 
different from that employed for the exhibition series. 

2. While it may be desirable to exhibit publicly many large or inde- 
structible objects belonging to the study series, this series should be as a 
rule permanently arranged in laboratories and storerooms not accessible 
to the general public. 

3. The study series is the storehouse from which the exhibition series 
is replaced or extended, and from which the needs of other museums 
may be supplied. 

4. Objects of the following classes should never be placed in the 
exhibition series : : 

(a) Those which are unique or very rare, and liable to destruction from 
exposure to light and dust. 

(4) Those which are the types of descriptions, except when large and 
indestructible. 

(c) Those belonging to series which are often required for purposes of 
comparison by students. 

5. In collecting materials for the study series, the needs of the future 
as well as those of the present should be kept in view. Specimens in 
this series should therefore be acquired in quantities sufficiently large to 
meet the needs of students hereafter. While nothing of value should 
be lost, it is questionable, however, whether material should be sought 
in large quantity when there is no indication that it will soon be needed. 

6. The fact that an object is common now is no indication that it will 
remain so, and the abundance of any kind of objects in a given locality, 
is often good evidence that it is rare in most other parts of the world. 

7. Specimens in the study series, though hidden from sight, should be 
the object of care as solicitous as that bestowed upon the exhibition 
series, and should be available upon demand, like the books in the stack 
rooms of a library. 


C.—THE EXHIBITION SERIES. 


1. The ‘‘People’s musenm’’ is that portion of a museum which is 
on public exhibition; the ‘‘Student’s museum”’ that which is devoted 


220 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


to laboratories and lecture rooms. ‘The ‘‘ People’s museum’’ should 
be much more than a hall full of specimens in glass cases. It should 
be a hall full of ideas, arranged with the strictest attention to system. 

2. The ideas which a museum is intended to teach can only be con- 
veyed by means of labels. 

As I have said in a previous paper: 

An efficient educational museum may be described as a collection of 
instructive labels, each illustrated by a well-selected specimen. 

3. The effectiveness of a museum for the use of the public at large 
depends chiefly upon the following considerations: 

(a) There should be a careful selection and effective arrangement of 
the specimens exhibited (which implies the exclusion of many objects in 
themselves attractive and interesting). 

(6) The specimens for exhibition must be chosen solely with refer- 
ence to the lesson they can teach, singly or in combination. 

(c) A small exhibition series, complete within its own limits, system- 
atically arranged, fully labeled, and effectively displayed, is far more use- 
ful than a vast collection exhibited without reference to its teaching 
power. 

(d) ‘To complete a series any specimen is better than none. 

(e) A copy, model, or picture of a good thing is often more useful 
than an actual specimen of a poor one. 

(f) A picture or model may often be shown to advantage in place of 
a minute or unintelligible object. 

(g) Books, manuscripts, pictures, maps, etc., become specimens when 
treated in the museum method. 

(2) There should be a thorough system of labels, written in simple lan- 
guage, supplemented by pictures, diagrams, maps, and books of reference. 

(7) Cases, labels, colors of backgrounds, aisles, and all the practical 
details of arrangement, however minute, should be considered with the 
comfort and physical ease of the visitor in mind, since the use of a 
museum is at best necessarily attended by fatigue of eyes and of body, 
which may be greatly lessened by the adoption of proper devices. 

(7) Installation ideals can not be too lofty. 


D.—CUMBERSOME AND SUPERFLUOUS MATERIALS IN COLLECTIONS. 


1. There are few objects which may not be used in museum work. It 
does not follow, however, that any one museum should attempt to include 
such objects. There are many which in the present stage of museum 
practice may be entirely neglected. If any museum were to be extended 
to the limits of its possibilities, a dictionary might be made to serve as 
an alphabetical index to its contents. 

2. One of the chief perils to a museum is the possession of vast 
collections. 

3. Not the least important duty of the curator is to prevent the acces- 
sion of undesirable material. 


a ee 


Report of U.S, National Museum, 1897. Part Il, PLATE 39. 


hea a —_. 


The Principles of Museum Administration. 221 


4. Material not germane to the plan of a museum should be exchanged 
or given to the other museums which have uses for it. What is expensive 
and unprofitable to on2 may be of the greatest value to another. 


E.—SYNOPTICAL AND SPECIAL COLLECTIONS WITHIN MUSEUMS. 


1. Synoptical or dictionary collections are advantageous in museums of 
every class. Their purpose is to teach some special lesson by means of a 
small or complete series of specimens, arranged, labeled and provided 
with all possible illustrative accessories. 

A synoptical series with a full complement of descriptive labels forms 
for any science an elementary manual, the labels, forming the text, the 
specimens the illustrations. 

CoMMENT.—A collection of this kind in a natural history museum may either 
illustrate the principles of classification and phylogeny, those of geographical distri- 
bution, or may deal with the problems of comparative morphology. One of the best 
of the latter classes is that in the great central hall of the British Museum of Natural 
History, while an excellent type of the second class is the Museum of Comparative 
Zoology, and of the first, that developed under the direction of Mr. Higgins in the 
Liverpool Museum. 

Collections illustrating systems of crystallization and scales of hardness and color 
are found in many mineralogical cabinets. 

Many of the best school museums are practically synoptical collections, and this 
and nothing more is what they should always aim at. 


2. In some collections there is a similar separation of certain objects 
with a less definite purpose, as, for instance, in the well-known Tribuna 
in the Uffizi Gallery in Florence. In many art museums there is a similar 
effort to bring together their most valuable and famous possessions in one 
central hall. 

3. There is no limit to the possibilities in the way of developing special 
collections, and such collections, with judicious treatment, do more than 
anything else to add to the attractiveness and individuality of a museum. 

The collections of British birds in attitudes of life, mounted in the 
midst of their natural surroundings, at South Kensington, is one of the 
most striking and memorable features in that museum. A similar collec- 
tion in the Museum of the University of Pisa, formed early in this cen- 
tury by Paolo Savi, though on a smaller scale, is no less prominent a 
feature of that smaller museum. There are several special halls in the 
Museum at Naples, especially that containing the collection of burnt 
manuscripts from the buried city, which are unique. Numerous other 
examples might readily be cited. 


F.—LOAN COLLECTIONS AND ITINERATING MUSEUMS. 


1. Large museums may greatly increase their educational effectiveness 
by lending special collections, well labeled and arranged, to towns not 
provided with museum facilities, and by replacing these from time to time 
with others. This has been done with success by the department of 
science and art in Great Britain, and it has resulted not only in a 


222 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


great improvement in the provincial museums throughout the United 
Kingdom, but in the establishment of many new ones. 

CoMMENT.—This system appears to have grown out of the suggestion made more 
than half a century ago by George Rennie and others to the committee on arts and 
manufactures appointed by the House of Commons. 

2. In the United States the same thing has been attempted in requiring 
the National Museum, as well as the several Departments of the Govern- 
ment at Washington, to exhibit in the great expositions which have been 
held from time to time in the principal cities. This method is much more 
costly than that employed in Great Britain, and it will scarcely be claimed 
that it is equally effective. 


VI—THE PRESERVATION AND PREPARATION OF 
MUSEUM MATERIALS. 


A.—CONSERVATISM AND TRUTHFULNESS IN THE HANDLING OF MUSEUM 
MATERIALS. 


1. It is not only essential that the full history, locality, original appear- 
ance, etc., of each specimen should be fully recorded, but that the speci- 
men itself should be preserved from mutilation, distortion, and all other 
harm. Carelessness is the unpardonable sin in a museum worker, and 
the officers in charge of valuable collections should be held to a strict 
accountability and if need be placed under bond, not only for the safety, 
but for the proper treatment of the treasures in their care. Preparators 
and taxidermists should be kept under the strictest surveillance. 


B.—REPAIRS AND RESTORATION OF SPECIMENS. 


1. Repairs are legitimate when necessary for the safety or permanent 
preservation of objects, for keeping together the parts of objects which 
have been broken, but in the interests of truth and science the fact that 
an object thus repaired should never be disguised. 

2. This principle applies to natural history specimens, to archzeological 
objects, and to works of art as well. 

3. Restoration, or the replacing of missing parts, is rarely defensible 
when in the process of restoration any portion of the original object is 
covered up. Restorations made in such manner that the part restored 
is not at once-distinguishable are unpardonable. If it is necessary to 
restore missing parts, the restorations should be made upon a cast or 
model, and not upon the original. 

CoMMEN’T.—This principle has reference to hypothetical restorations. It is quite 
permissible to restore upon the original specimens, in natural history collections, 


where there are in existence similar specimens from which further guidance may be 
obtained. 


C.—_ COPIES: 


1. Copies are available under certain limitations. Sculptures, coins, 
metal work, many ethnographical objects, architectural models, and 


The Principles of Museum Administration. 223 


many products of the decorative and industrial art may be reproduced 
easily and inexpensively, and the copying of pictures though more diffi- 
cult is still practicable. In natural history, as has already been said, only 
fossils can advantageously be reproduced by copies. 

2. A copy of an important object is always more desirable for educa- 
tional use than an original of minor significance. 


D.—-MODELS. 


1. Models may also be used to represent objects which are unattain- 
able, or from their magnitude or minuteness* unavailable. Models may 
also be used to replace alcoholic preparations, or in the place of pictures, 
when the latter are less effective. Aquatic invertebrates, fishes, reptiles, 
cetaceans, figures showing the races of mankind and abnormal and nor- 
mal developments of the human body, and almost everything in the field 
of anatomy, osteology, and embryology can be shown admirably by the 
use of models. 


131 ECA ONIN) 


1. Pictures are often better than specimens to illustrate certain ideas. 
The races of man and their distribution, for instance, can only be shown 
by pictures and maps. 


F.—BOOKS. 


1. Certain kinds of books are more useful and safer in the museum 
than on the library shelves, for in the museum they may be seen daily by 
thousands, while in the library their very existence is forgotten by all 
except their custodian. Books such as Audubon’s Birds of North Amer- 
ica, Gould’s Humming Birds, and Owen Jones’s Alhambra, are a few 
among the numerous works of which everyone has heard and which 
everyone wants to see once in his lifetime. In a library they are proba- 
bly not examined by ten persons in a year; in a museum the volumes 
exposed to view in a glass case, and a few of the most striking plates 
attractively framed and hung upon the wall near at hand, teach a lesson 
to every visitor. 


G.—THE MOUNTING OF ANIMALS. 


1. Taxidermy is allied to sculpture, and should be governed by the 
same canons of synthesis and repose. The attitudes of nature should be 
preserved, but action should be avoided except in the case of groups 
mounted in the midst of natural accessories, and even then action should 
never be violent. In mounting specimens to be arranged in the syste- 
matic series the attitudes should always be simple and in some degree 
conventional and uniform. 


*Where enlargements are employed it is well to place the actual objects by their 
side, to give an idea of the scale of enlargements. 


224 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 
H.—TYPES AND UNIQUES. 


1. These should always be marked in some conspicuous and unmistak- 
able manner, and if not placed in special cases so labeled that their 
value may be understood by all. * 

The safety of types should be provided for by special rules, and it is 
doubtful whether they should ever be allowed to leave the building in 
which they are deposited. 

2. In zoology, botany, or mineralogy a type is a specimen which has 
been described in giving a new specific name. Besides types of new 
species there are equally valuable specimens which have served as the 
foundation of critical revisions or monographs of groups, which are 
equally deserving of special protection. Specimens which have been 
figured in standard works are subject to similar treatment. 


I DUPTICATHS:- 


1. A duplicate, from the museum standpoint, is simply a superfluous 
specimen. A collection may possess scores of specimens at first view 
seemingly precisely identical, and yet not be able to spare one of them. 
Specimens can never be separated as duplicates until after the collection 
to which they belong has been exhaustively studied and the results of 
the study published. Even then there is danger in parting with them. 

CoMMENT’T. —The practice in the United States National Museum is to reserve from 
the material upon which a given memoir has been based enough to render it pos- 
sible to rewrite the memoir from the beginning if every copy should be destroyed. 

2. In great museums of research it is necessary and practicable to pre- 
serve extensive series of specimens, representing every possible variation 
and a great number of localities. In smaller museums this can not be 
done, except, it may be, in special fields, and the lesser museums can 
usually throw a much larger proportion of specimens into the duplicate 
series. 

3. The use of duplicates is for exchange and distribution. ‘Their 
value when thus dispersed depends upon the most accurate identification 
and labeling, based upon comparisons with the reserve collection from 
which they are taken. 


VII.—THE ART OF INSTALLATION. 


A.—INSTALLATION METHODS. 


1. The arrangement and mounting of collections for exhibition, com- 
monly known as their ‘‘installation,’’ is an art worthy of serious atten- 
tion on the part of every museum officer. This art is allied to certain 
branches of architecture, especially that of interior decoration, but the 


‘In addition to the usual label a wafer or painted spot of bright color—red or 
green—greatly aids in making a type conspicuous, 


PLATE 40. 


Part Il. 


Report of U.S. National Museum, 1897. 


STEPHEN HALES. 


The Principles of Museum Administration. 225 


services of an architect are not always to be had, and the man who is 
responsible for the arrangement of the halls and cases in a museum should 
be able to do this work effectively. Ifa collection is to be exhibited at 
all, it should be done well, and I have little sympathy with my judicious 
friend who protested against the writing of this chapter on the ground 
that such ‘‘considerations of upholstery’’ are beneath the dignity of an 
institution of learning. 

The success of installation, like that of every art, depends largely upon 
attention to minute details. Insignificant as they may seem, the slight- 
est of these is as worthy of consideration as that which seems to be the 
greatest. 

2. Installation work has to do with two matters: (a) The arrangement 
of halls, and of cases and other objects with relation to the halls, light, 
and general effect. (4) The construction and fitting of cases and the 
arrangement of objects and labels within the cases. The form and 
arrangement of labels is also intimately connected with installation, but 
this will hereafter be discussed under the head of ‘‘ Labels.’’ * 


B.—THE ARRANGEMENT OF HALLS. 


Among the essential features of effective arrangement of floor space 
are the following: 

1. An arrangement in each hall, and especially in that which is first 
entered, which shall convey to the visitor an impression of the character 
and aims of the museum, and at the same time give an impression of 
repose, dignity, and beauty. The impression which the mind receives 
immediately after the first door has been passed is always the strongest 
and most lasting. 

2. A single entrance and one consecutive line of progress through the 
halls is most advantageous, both to administrator and visitor, and should 
be duly considered. 

3. If the main or circulation aisles be wide and uninterrupted, and 
there are occasional broad spaces in front of important exhibits, the pas- 
sages between the cases may be very narrow, provided the cases are built 
with this view. 

4. The exhibits should be so arranged that their general features may 
be apprehended in a rapid stroll through the halls, while those wishing 
to study a special subject minutely may find the extended collections in 
close proximity to the landmark exhibits intended for the casual visitor. 
A striking exhibit at the end of a wide aisle may be used to draw visitors 
to a particular portion of the hall. 

5. In the interest of good light and general effect the lower cases and 
objects should be placed nearest the main aisles and the center of the 
hall, while tall cases should be farthest from the eye. 


*See Chapter IX, A, 1-6, p. 229; D. 3, p. 234. 
NAT MUS.97, PT 2 £5 


226 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


6. In large halls a system of alcoves with liberal aisles, or a double, 
triple, or quadruple system of circulation aisles, may be used to advantage. 

7. Transverse aisles are usually objectionable; when used a wide, open 
area near the center of the hall is advantageous. ‘This may be enlarged 
so as to surround some striking and symmetrical pedestal exhibit. (A 
formal case should never interrupt the course of an aisle.) Very wide 
aisles may often be advantageously divided by symmetrical and graceful 
pedestal exhibits, by which the current of visitors is parted. 

8. Objects too large to take their proper place in the cases may be 
declared ‘‘out of classification,’’ and used decoratively on the walls or 
pedestals, with cross-reference labels. 

g. A small label, map, or diagram at the eye level is as conspicuous as 
an immense one hung high on the walls. Such accessories should only 
be made large when needed for decorative uses and treated in a decora-. 
tive manner. 

10. These principles apply also to exposition installation, in which, 
however, an ‘‘open system”’ of installation is needed, with twice or thrice 
the floor space for the same material that is required in ordinary museum 
installation. 

C.—CASES AND THEIR ARRANGEMENT. 


1. The function of a case or pedestal is to protect the exhibit and 
to display it to the best advantage. Its character should be deter- 
mined not only by its intended use, but by the position in which it is to 
stand, the form of adjacent cases, direction and amount of light, etc. 
Cases should therefore be built only as need arises. They should be 
planned so that they can be used with advantage in halls that have light 
from overhead as well as from the sides. This precaution will simplify 
the problem of lighting at night. 

2. Cases should not attract attention either by their austerity of design 
or workmanship, but should be simply appropriate and pleasing, well 
locked, dust-tight, and nearly air-tight. The frames should be as light 
and inconspicuous as possible. Transverse bars across an exhibited object 
are unpardonable. Glass should be as large, clear, and good as possible, 
for economy in glass is rarely true economy. 

3. The space above the 6-foot line is rarely of use, while for small 
objects nothing is gained by display below a height of 30 inches. Large 
objects may be shelved at 10 or 12 inches from the floor. Where the 
aisles are very wide lower shelving for small objects is possible, but it is 
more economical to shelve high, narrow the minor aisles, and use the 
lower parts of the cases for storage closets. 

4. A system of interchangeable units in drawers and mounts, as well 
as in cases, is of the highest importance, as facilitating the transfer of 
cases from hall to hall and saving cost in‘manufacture. This should 
‘include not only the exhibition cases, but those in the storage series as 
well. 


The Principles of Museum Administration. 3277 


5. Mobility is even more necessary. All floor cases and pedestals 
should have fixed rollers or roller trucks so that they may be moved with 
their contents, and all fixed cases should be built with screws so as to be 
readily moved from hall to hall. 

6. Cases which permit a fixed installation and a recombination of units 
without a rehandling of specimens are economical and in many depart- 
ments indispensable. Possibility of interchange of units between the 
exhibition and storage systems of cases is indispensable. 

7. For the interior of cases the prime need is that the system of shelv- 
ing should be as flexible as possible, and that the inside colors should be 
restful to the eye and no lighter in color than the necessity of illumina- 
tion may require. 

8. The mountings for individual specimens should not attract the eye 
either by beauty or ugliness, but should support and set off the specimens, 
and by their uniformity and propriety add to the appearance of system 
and order in the exhibits. 

g. The inscription should be so attached that it can not be removed or 
effaced, and, when possible, engraved or painted upon the object itself. 
When a mark of this kind is not possible, a ticket or label, preferably the 
latter, should be attached in the most prominent manner. Even whena 
ticket is used at least the catalogue number should be inscribed upon 
the specimen, if this can be done without injuring it. These require- 
ments do not apply so much to large and heavy objects permanently 
installed in an exhibition series as to those kept, even temporarily, in a 
study or storage series. Fragile objects, or those which can not receive 
a permanent mark, should be kept in type receptacles of glass or other 
material, upon which should be placed the inscription. Even when 
preparations are thus kept in jars or boxes they should, when possible, 
have some ticket attached to them bearing the same number as the recep- 
tacle in which they are placed, so that if specimens are taken out they 
shall not be put back in the wrong receptacle. 

CoMMEN’T.—In the United States National Museum, each alcoholic preparation is 


marked with a ticket of block tin, on which the catalogue number is stamped, the 
same number being engraved with a diamond upon the glass jar in which it belongs. 


10. A specimen may consist of a single object, or of a large number of 
similar objects from one source. For instance, a collection of engravings 
in one portfolio; a collection of similar kinds of stone implements from 
one excavation; a number of animals or plants of one species from the 
same locality. 

For lack of a better term, the material included in a museum catalogue 
number, whether a single specimen or many, is called a ‘‘lot.’’ This 
term is chiefly employed in museum statistics. 

11. Explorers and collectors in the field should keep their records by 
catalogue and label, in accordance with the principles laid down for 
museums. ‘Their work thus gains immensely in definiteness and value, 


228 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


and their temporary labels, catalogue numbers, and registers are easily 
brought into relation with those of the permanent museum series.  Pri- 
vate collectors, no matter how small their field of activity, are in duty 
bound to follow the same methods of record. 

12. The principles crudely stated above may require modification, but 
the fundamental ideas are applicable to collections of every kind, public 
and private; and the owner of any interesting object, be it picture, manu- 
script, decorative object, or heirloom, should be urged to label his 
possessions for the benefit and protection of posterity. 

13. What is inscribed upon the specimen is properly a ‘‘ mark ;’’ what 
is attached to it upon a card or its equivalent is properly a “‘label.’’ 
The term ‘‘ etiquette,’’ used in France, Germany, and upon the Continent 
generally is equivalent to our ‘‘label.’’ But neither the term ‘‘etiquette’’ 
nor its equivalent ‘‘ ticket,’’ though the last is allowable in the same sense 
as ‘‘label,’’ is often used by those who speak English. 

In practice it is convenient to speak of the inscription which serves to 
identify an individual specimen, whether inscribed upon it or attached to 
it, as its ‘‘label.’’ ‘Thus the individual or ‘‘ specimen label’’ should be 
clearly distinguished from the ‘‘ exhibition label,’’ which has quite a 
different function and which ought to have a more distinctive name. 


VIII.—RECORDS, CATALOGUES, AND SPECIMEN 
LABELS. 


A.—MUSEUM RECORDS. 


1. The value of a collection depends in the highest degree upon the 
accuracy and fullness of the records of the history of the objects which 
it contains. 

2. A museum specimen without a history is practically without value, 
and had much better be destroyed than preserved. 

CoMMEN'’.—There will be many legitimate exceptions to this rule, but it can do 


no harm to state it forcibly, since the museum curator is more likely to err on the 
side of saving too much. 


B.—CATALOGUES OR REGISTERS. 


1. A museum catalogue is a numerical list or register in which each 
specimen is recorded, under a separate number, in connection with which 
are entered all the facts known in regard to its history. 

2. The catalogue should be supplemented by a file case, in which 
should be preserved notes, letters, or papers relating to each specimen 
classified under the catalogue number. 

3. The numerical register may advantageously be supplemented by 
card catalogues systematically arranged. 

4. Ina large museum, or one of a varied character, it is desirable that 
there should be separate catalogues or registers for the several depart- 
ments, each with a separate series of numbers. 


Report of U. S. National Museum, 1897. Part Il. PLATE 41. 


CHARLES FREDERIC HARTT. 


The Principles of Museum Administration. 229 


5. When a museum has a system of departmental catalogues, there 
should be a general catalogue, or accession book, in which ‘‘accessions’’ 
are entered in the order of their reception. ‘The term ‘‘ accession’? is 
used to describe the material received at one time, from one source, 
whether it be a single specimen or a shipload. 

In connection with the accession book should be filed, under the ‘‘acces- 
sion numbers,’’ all invoices and correspondence relating to the special 
accession. 

In each departmental catalogue a separate column should be provided 
in which the accession number should be recorded. A large number of 
specimens in many departments may fall under one accession number. 

6. There is much advantage in printing the catalogues of a museum. 
When a collection is sufficiently rich in material to afford the opportunity 
for a scientific revision and classification of the science which it illustrates, 
the advantage is very great indeed, as is demonstrated by what the Brit- 
ish Museum has accomplished. 

7. When great general catalogues are not practicable, much advantage 
is gained by printing catalogues of special collections, however small they 
may be, provided that each is complete in its own field. A report or 
memoir upon a special collection may be made to serve the purpose of a 
special catalogue. 

When printed catalogues can be well illustrated, their usefulness is 
increased many fold, since by this means the treasures of one museum 
are made available for study and comparison in every other museum, as 
well as by the multitudes who have not the opportunity to see the museums 
in person. 

8. Catalogues are the keys to the treasure vaults of a museum. 


€!—- SPECIMEN LABELS OR: TICKETS. 


1. The inscription which is inseparably affixed to each individual speci- 
men is the most essential part of the museum record; for this not only 
establishes the identity of the specimen, but serves to show to what 
museum it belongs. Registers and other records may burn, but the indi- 
vidual label will remain as long as the specimen itself, to give to it authen- 
ticity and significance. 

2. The inscription should not only refer defitiitely to the register by 
means of the catalogue number, but should, if possible, contain a state- 
ment of locality, and the name of the collector or maker. 


IX.—EXHIBITION LABELS AND. THEIR FUNCTIONS. 
A.—THE PURPOSE OF THE EXHIBITION LABEL, 


1. The exhibition label is the principal means by which the treasures 
in a museum are made intelligible to the public, the guide, the lecturer, 
and the published handbook, though each in a limited field more effec- 


230 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


tive, being absolutely powerless when the needs of the great majority of 
students and visitors are concerned. 

2. The labels describing the specimens in a collection are intended to 
take the place of the curator of the collection when it is impossible for 
him personally to exhibit the objects and explain their meaning. When 
collections were small and visitors few, the curator or owner of a cabinet 
was accustomed to conduct visitors in person among the cases, to take 
the specimens in his hand, to tell their names and where they came from, 
to indicate features of special interest, and to answer questions. This 
was in some respects an ideal way when the curator was a man of wide 
knowledge and so much of an enthusiast that he took pleasure in talking 
without limit. The method was not without defects, however, since the 
lecturer (for such he was in fact) selected for exhibition a limited num- 
ber of objects which interested him, or which he supposed might interest 
the visitors, and gave the latter no chance for selection. Furthermore, 
the arrangement could not be such as to convey a sequence of ideas, such 
as a selected and well-labeled series of specimens can do, and the spoken 
descriptions, being as a rule full of unfamiliar words, were not remem- 
bered. ‘The printed label may be read over again and again, and is often 
copied into the visitor’s notebook. Again, under the old system, exam- 
ining a collection was looked upon rather in the light of amusement than 
study, and what might have been possible in the way of instruction was 
rarely attempted. 

In these days, when the curator attempts verbal instruction, it is by 
means of a lecture in the museum lecture hall, or, if a floor lecture, 
among the cases, surrounded by hundreds or scores of auditors, who may 
either take notes or find the substance of the lecture in a syllabus or 
printed text-book prepared by the lecturer. 

Where one museum visitor listens to the museum lectures, tens of thou- 
sands pass through the halls without a guide. They must depend 
entirely upon the labels for information; for guide books, if such have 
been printed, are rarely bought, still more rarely used in the presence of 
specimens, and though often taken home with the intention of studying 
them, are only in the rarest instances ever opened after leaving the 
museum. 

3. The function of a label, then, is a most important one, since it is 
practically only through the aid of the labels that visitors derive any 
benefit whatever from a visit to a museum. ‘Therefore a label should 
answer all the questions which are likely to arise in the mind of the 
persons examining the object to which it is attached. 

4. The office of the descriptive label may be stated as follows: 

(a) The label must tell the name of the object; its exact and technical 
name always, and if there be one, its common name. 

(6) It must call attention to the features which it is important for the 
visitor to notice. 


The Principles of Museum Administration. 231 


(c) It must explain its meaning and its relations to the other objects 
in the same series. If it is a natural history specimen it should explain 
its geographical distribution, which, if possible, should be plotted on a 
small map, forming a part of the label, and mentioning peculiarities of 
structure or habit. 

If it is an ethnological object, its uses and construction should be 
explained, its materials named, if they are not obvious, and supplemen- 
tary information given by means of pictures; and where pictures are 
better than words, these may be attached. 

(d) ‘The exact locality, date of collection, and source of the specimen 
exhibited, should be mentioned. 

(e) For the convenience of visitors it is well, in many cases, to give 
the dimensions or weight of the specimen. 

5. The label may be made to convey much information in addition to 
that which is printed upon it by means of maps, pictures, and diagrams, 
which may be placed by its side to reenforce its teachings, and also by 
cross references to other specimens in the museum, or to books on the 
museum reading tables, or in its library. 

6. Exact references from the label to the specimen which it explains 
may be effected by a system of reference numbers, such as are used to 
bring a diagram into relation with descriptive text. 

Colors may be applied to portions of a specimen, in order to make the 
label system more intelligible; as, for instance, when it is desired to com- 
pare similar parts in a series of specimens placed side by side, the same 
color in each signifying homology. 

And ‘‘pointers’’ may be used upon the specimens to indicate the locali- 
ties of small objects, or especially noteworthy features referred to on the 
label. 


COMMEN’.—The late Professor Moseley wasone of the first to adopt these methods, 
in the Oxford Museum. ‘The system of showing homologies by color was used in 
the Milan Museum as early as 1878, and has been very effectively used by Mr. F. A. 
Lucas in the United States National Museum. 


B.—THE ART OF LABEL WRITING. 


1. The preparation of labels is one of the most difficult tasks of the 
museum man. The selection of the descriptive matter to be printed 
requires the best of judgment and the widest and most accurate infor- 
mation; while to determine the form and size of the different labels in a 
series, and to secure the best typographic effect, is equally difficult, and 
requires abilities of quite a different order. 

2. A label may contain a vast amount of exact and valuable informa- 
tion, and yet by reason of faulty literary and typographic arrangement, 
have as little significance and value as a piece of blank paper. 

3. Before a specialist is prepared to label a collection he must be a 
complete master of the subject which the collection is intended to illus- 
trate. After he has written the series of labels, if the collection is com- 


232 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


plete he will have the material under control which would enable him to 
write a very complete book of reference upon the subject. 

4. No task is more exacting than this form of prvéczs writing. Not 
only is it impossible to conceal lack of perfect knowledge, but the infor- 
mation must be conveyed in a terse, concise, and definite phraseology, 
such as is not demanded by any other class of writing, unless it may be 
the preparation of definitions for a dictionary. He who writes definitions 
for a dictionary, however, has usually the advantage of having before 
him numerous other definitions of the same term which he needs only to 
collate and rearrange. 

5. A good descriptive label should do something more than impart 
information. It must be so phrased as to excite the interest of the per- 
son who is examining the specimen to which it is attached; to call his 
attention to the points which it is most important that he should observe; 
to give him the information which he most needs while looking at the 
specimen, and to refer him to the books by means of which he can, if so 
disposed, learn all that is known upon the subject illustrated. 

6. The art of label writing is in its infancy, and there are doubtless 
possibilities of educational results through the agency of labels and speci- 
mens which are not as yet at all understood. It is clear, however, that 
the advice of the old cook in regard to making soup applies equally well 
to a good label; that ‘‘its merit depends much more on what you leave 
out than on what you put in.’’ The value of this method of instruction 
is perhaps better understood by the most advanced writers of school text- 
books and dictionaries than even by the average museum worker. 

CoMMENYT.—In Doctor Edward Eggleston’s new School History of the United 
States engravings, portraits, pictures of historical localities, costumes, and archz-. 
ological objects, are interspersed through the text, and each of these has a label of 
the museum type surrounded by rules and separated from the text, with which it 
has usually only general relationship. The originals which are thus illustrated, if 
brought together, would make an admirable museum of American history, and the 
book itself could hardly be improved uponas a handbook tosuch a collection. The 
modern illustrated dictionary owes much of its success to the adoption of museum 
methods, due perhaps to the fact that so many men familiar with museum methods 
have been engaged upon the preparation of the latest American publication of this 
kind, the Century Dictionary, and the more recently published Standard Dictionary. 
These works thus impart instruction by methods very similar to those in use in 
museums, except that they are much at a disadvantage by reason of their alphabetical 
arrangement. ‘This is, of course, one respect in which the museum exhibition case 
has the advantage over the lecturer who can only present one subject at a time, or 
over the writer of books who is prevented by the size of his pages from bringing a 
large number of ideas into view at once. ‘This difficulty has been in part overcome 
by the editor of the Standard Dictionary, in the great plates where are shown in one 
case all the principal varieties of precious stones; in another plate all the races of 
the domesticated dog; in another, the badges of orders of chivalry. Even this, 
however, is far from reaching the possibility possessed by the museum, with its 
broad expanses of exhibition cases, of showing a large number of objects so arranged 
as to explain their mutual relationship, and so labeled as to explain the method of 
arrangement. 


Report of U, S. National Museum, 1897. Part II. PLATE 42. 


The Principles of Museum Administration. ef) 


C.—FORM AND SIZE OF LABELS. 


1. The size and typography of the label are of the greatest importance. 
The best written label may be ruined by the printer. Not only must the 
letters be large enough to be legible from the customary point of view, 
but the type must be pleasing in form and so arranged as to lead the 
eye of the reader with pleasure from one line to another, and so broken 
into paragraphs as to separate from each other the topics discussed. 

Furthermore, a system of subordinate sizes of type is essential, so that 
the most important facts shall first meet the eye. In many of the labels 
printed for the National Museum type of four or five different sizes is 
used, the largest giving the name of the object, the next size the name 
of the locality and donor, the next its distribution, and so on, much in 
the order of importance of the topics already proposed, while the least 
essential illustrated matter at the bottomof the label is placed in the 
smallest type. The theory is that the largest type should give the in- 
formation desired by the greatest number of visitors (by everyone); the 
next size, that needed by those who are studying the collection in a more 
leisurely way, and so on. 

Too much can not be said of the necessity of breaking the descriptive 
matter into short paragraphs, which should never be more than half a 
square in length. 

CoMMENT. —Where a label of great width is printed, it is believed that it is better 
to arrange the matter in two columns, rather than to weary the eye by following 
back and fro across the card. Labels, as a rule, seem to be most satisfactory when 
nearly square, or with the height less than the width. 

2. Much attention should be given to the selection of type and color 
for labels, it having been found that labels printed on white cardboard 
become dirty or turn yellow, besides being dazzling and hard to read. 
Many tints of cardboard, which would otherwise be available, can not be 
used because of their tendency to fade, objectionable in itself and doubly 
objectionable when it becomes necessary to put a fresh bright label by 
the side of one which has become soiled in use. 

CoMMENT.—Almost every sample of colored cardboard which has been tried in 
the United States National Museum has faded after atime. The most satisfactory 
has been one of greenish gray. This is temporarily in use in the geological and 
mineralogical collections, where a light gray color for the interior of the cases and 
shelves seems preferable, and also in the collection of birds, which is installed, by 
preference, in a somewhat dark apartment. The standard label board, however, is a 
heavy rough-faced manila. The color, being that natural to this fiber, is unchange- 
able. There is no fading, little tendency to become dirty, and the soft, rich, brownish- 
yellow tone sets off admirably the heavy black lines of the antique-faced type which 
is used,and harmonizes well with the buffs and maroons which are favorite colors for 
case interiors. Cartridge paper in any tint of gray or light brown is an admirable 
material for labels, especially large ones. It must, however, be glued to a tablet. If 
this is made of dark wood with a bevel retreating from the edge of the label, forming 
a dark border, the -ffect is very pleasing. Labels thus prepared and mounted upon 


metal rods are used by the National Museum for general-classification labels in the 
interior of cases. ” 


234 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 
D.—CLASSIFICATION LABELS. 


1. In addition to the labels of individual objects there are ‘‘classifica- 
tion labels,’’ which serve the same purpose as the volume, chapter, section, 
and paragraph headings in a printed work. 

For the smaller groups these are placed inside of the case; for the larger 
ones outside, often serving as ‘‘case labels.”’ 

2. The relationship of the objects in a series to each other may usually 
be indicated by the size of the labels, which should be uniform for objects 
of the same general character in the same case. Whena deviation from 
this rule is necessary, if the size of the type remain the same, more space 
may be obtained, either by slight widening or slight lengthening; but in 
the same series it should be always lengthened or always widened. 
Classification labels which are placed unattached among the specimens 
increase in size with the importance of the grade of that case. 

3. There are limits to the possibilities of making labels speak by their 
size. An object at the top of a case or on a pedestal or in a case by 
itself is always regarded as ‘‘ out of classification,’’ and its label arranged 
solely with reference to its appearance or utility in the place where it is 
to stand. It is necessary to vary the size somewhat in the same series, 
when, as in a long case of mammals, a small species and a large one are 
placed side by side. Mere, for eesthetic reasons, the rule is usually set 
aside. 

COMMENT.—It is the plan in the United States National Museum to have a large 
label, glazed and framed, at the top of each case or in front of each panel. These 
are printed on black or maroon paper in gold or silver letters. The labels in gold or 
black are printed from large wooden type and are used to indicate the general system 
of classification of the cases upon the floor. When it is desired to use outside labels, 
glazed and framed, which are not in this general classification series, we print with 


heavy-faced type in black upon manila or cartridge paper, since the black upon yel- 
low is more legible with comparatively small type than the gold upon black. 


Xx. GUIDES AND LECTURERS; HANDBOOKS Awe 
REFERENCE BOOKS. 


A. 


GUIDES AND LECTURERS. 


1. In the days when museums were small and visitors few it was 
possible, as has already been said, for a curator of a collection personally 
to conduct the visitors and to explain to them the collections; but this 
can no longer be done under the changed conditions. The label and the 
handbook have forever replaced the guide, for an unintelligent leader 
can effect nothing but harm. 

2. A modification of the guide system is still practicable under certain 
circumstances, as when a party of persons interested in some special sub- 
ject are conducted through a portion of a museum by a teacher or some 
member of the museum staff who serves in thiscapacity. ‘This is the 
floor-lecture system, which, however, to be efficient must be coupled with 


The Principles of Museum Administration. 235 


some method of excluding the general public from the alcove 1n which 
the party is for the time engaged. 

3. Formal lectures in the lecture hall of the museum, illustrated by 
specimens withdrawn from the cases, are exceedingly useful, although 
they reach but a limited number of persons. Such lectures are most 
useful when in courses and devoted to a special topic; still better when 
they are addressed toa particular class in the community, as, for instance, 
the teachers in public schools. 

CoMMENT.—The courses carried on at the American Museum of Natural History 
in connection with the normal-school system of the State of New York are an 
' example. 

4. In university towns the use of the lecture room and the illustrative 
resources of the museum may to good advantage be placed at the disposal 
of the professors and their classes. 

5. A member of the staff may sometimes do good service by inviting a 
group of visitors to his laboratory, in order to explain, with the use of 
specimens and reference books, some special point upon which they seek 
information. 

B.—HANDBOOKS AND GUIDEBOOKS. 


1. The handbook and guidebook supplement the label system, and 
used in connection with labels render still more unnecessary the services 
of a guide. 

2. The guidebook, properly speaking, is a brief manual in which the 
plan of the museum and the general character of its contents are described. 
It should have diagrams of buildings, showing the location of the various 
halls and their uses, and diagrams when necessary of the halls, showing 
the system of arrangement. The guidebook, in short, is a general label 
for the museum asa whole. Since guidebooks are usually kept as souve- 
nirs, they should contain a certain amount of descriptive and historical 
matter, and pictures of the building and of some of its most notable 
treasures. 

3. The handbook relates to a portion of the museum, either a depart- 
ment or a special collection within the department, and should present 
the information conveyed by the exhibition labels belonging to the branch 
to which it relates. 

When a collection has been well labeled, a complete handbook may be 
made simply by combining the labels in proper order and printing them. 
If the collection is complete and well selected, the handbook describing 
it becomes an encyclopeedic manual of the subject illustrated. 

Printed catalogues, such as have already been referred to, often fulfill 
the function of handbooks, though usually too technical for that purpose. 

The catalogue should be technical and exhaustive and adapted for the 
use of the professional student. When it relates to a large collection, 
and especially when illustrated, it is too large to be convenient for 
general use. 


236 Memortal of George Brown Goode. 


A handbook is usually intended for the use of the public and should be 
what its name signifies—a volume which may be carried in the hand by 
the visitor or general student. 

The handbook also serves to remind the visitor of what he has seen, 
and enable him to review the teachings of the museum after he has left 
it. It supplements and to some extent replaces the visitor’s personal 
notebook. 

4. The handbook and guidebook should never replace the descriptive 
label attached to each exhibited object. The practice not uncommon in 
art galleries and expositions of designating objects by number and describ- 
ing them only in the guidebook does not seem judicious, although in 
temporary exhibitions it can not always be avoided. It is a relic of 
the days when it was thought legitimate by this means to force every 
visitor to buy a catalogue, and thus contribute to the revenues of the 
establishment. 


C.—READING TABLES. 


tr. A certain number of bibliographies, dictionaries, and standard 
works of reference, directing visitors to the literature of the subject, 
should be placed in each hall, each table being devoted to the subject 
illustrated by the collections in the midst of which it stands. . These 
books may, for safety, be fastened to a reading desk or table. 

2. It is often advantageous to display books within the exhibition cases, 
with the specimens, to teach visitors what books they should use in carry- 
ing on the studies suggested by their visit to the museum. 


De ee Ree 


L. Every well-appointed museum should have a good reference library, 
which should include the principal books of reference in regard to the 
various specialties with which it is concerned, and especially the great 
illustrated works relating to other museums which can not be displayed 
in the exhibition halls. This library should be freely accessible to vis- 
itors and provided with comfortable furniture and facilities for taking 
notes. 

2. The museum library should, if possible, be so situated as to form 
one of the features of the museum, and the doors so arranged that vis- 
itors can look in without disturbing those who are reading. ‘The effective- 
ness of such an arrangement will be appreciated by all who have visited 
the Musée Guimet in Paris, or the Museo di Ultramar in Madrid: 

3. In addition to the general reference library, special collections of 
books may advantageously be developed in connection with the several 
departments of a museum. So long as these are judiciously limited in 
scope, they can not well be too extensive, since a technical library is 
always more useful when it is more directly under the influence of a spe- 
cialist, than when administered as a part of a great general library by 


e . 
porto 
) UES. 
mo 
’ 
R ationa useum . art 
L 
E 
3 


4 


The Principles of Museum Administration. 237 


professional librarians. In a library of this kind, much material not 
usually of much service elsewhere—pamphlets, cuttings, pictures, technical 
manuscripts, ete.—will accumulate and be kept under control. 


CoMMEN’T.—In the United States National Museum, there are a considerable num- 
ber of sectional libraries, shelved in proximity. to the collections to which they relate, 
and under the direct care of the curators. ‘These are all under control, by means of a 
card catalogue, kept in the central library, where works of general interest are 
retained, and may be recalled at any moment by the museum librarian. 


XI.—-THE FUTURE OF MUSEUM WORK. 
A.—THE GROWTH OF THE MUSEUM IDEA. 


1. There can be no doubt that the importance of the museum as an 
agency for the increase and diffusion of knowledge will be recognized so 
long as interest in science and education continues toexist. The predic- 
tion of Professor Jevons, in 1881, that the increase in the number of muse- 
eums of some sort or other must be almost coextensive with the progress 
of real popular education, is already being realized. Numerous local 
museums have been organized within the past fifteen years in the midst 
of new communities. Special museums of new kinds are developing in 
the old centers, and every university, college, and school is organizing or 
extending its cabinet. The success of the Museums Association in Great 
Britain is another evidence of the growing popularity of the museum idea, 
and similar organizations must of necessity soon be formed in every civilized 
nation. 

2. With this increase of interest there has been a corresponding improve- 
ment in museum administration. More men of ability and originality are 
engaging in this work, and the results are manifest in all its branches. 

The museum recluse, a type which had many representatives in past 
years, among them nota few eminent specialists, is becoming much less 
common, and this change is not to be regretted. The general use of 
specimens in class-room instruction and still more, the introduction of 
laboratory work in higher institutions, has brought an army of teachers 
intc direct relations with museum administration, and much support and 
improvement has resulted. 

3. Museum administration having become a profession, the feeling is 
growing more and more general that it is one in which talents of a high 
order can be utilized. It is essential to the future development of the 
museum that the best men should be secured for this kind of work, and 


to this end it is important that a lofty professional standard should be 
established. 


B.—PUBLIC APPRECIATION OF THE MATERIAL VALUE OF COLLECTIONS. 


1. The museum of nature or art is one of the most valuable material 
possessions of a nation or a city. It is, as has well been said, ‘‘the peo- 


238 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


ple’s vested fund.’’ It brings not only world-wide reputation, but many 
visitors and consequent commercial advantage. What Alpine scenery is 
to Switzerland, museums are to many neighboring nations. Some one 
has written that the Venus of Melos has brought more wealth to Paris 
than the Queen of Sheba brought to King Solomon, and that but for the 
possession of their collections (which are intrinsically so much treasure) 
Rome and Florence would be impoverished towns. 

This is thoroughly understood by the rulers of modern Italy. We are 
told that the first act of Garibaldi, after he had entered Naples in 1860, 
was to proclaim the city of Pompeii the property of the nation, and to 
increase the appropriation for excavations, so that these might be carried 
on with greater activity. ‘‘ He appreciated the fact that a nation which 
owns a gold mine ought to work it, and that Pompeii could be made for 
Naples and for Italy a source of wealth more productive than the gold 
mines of Sacramento.’’ If capital is an accumulation of labor, as econo- 
mists say, works of art, which are the result of the highest type of labor, 
must be capital of the most productive character. A country which has 
rich museums attracts to itself the money of travelers, even though it 
may have no other source of wealth. If, besides, the populace is made 
to understand the interest which is possessed by their treasures of art, 
they are inspired with the desire to produce others of the same kind; 
and so, labor increasing capital, there is infinite possibility for the growth 
of national societies devoted to the formation of museums, to their main- 
tenance, and to the education of the people by this means. 

Suggestive in this same connection was the remark of Sir William 
Flower to the effect that the largest museum yet erected, with all its 
internal fittings, ‘‘has not cost so much asa single fully-equipped line of 
battle ship, which in a few years may be either at the bottom of the sea 
or so obsolete in construction as to be worth no more than the material 
of which it is made.’’ 

COMMEN’T.—This principle was well stated more than half a century ago by 
Henry Edwards in his treatise on the Administrative economy of the fine arts in 
England, as follows: In addition to the broad principle that the public funds 
can never be better employed than in the establishment of institutions tending at 
once to refine the feeling and to improve the industry of the whole population, 
there is the subordinate, but yet important, ground of inducing and enabling private 
persons greatly to benefit the public by contributing toward the same end. No 
country [he continues] has more cause to be proud of that munificent spirit of 
liberality which leads private individuals to present or bequeath to the community 
valuable collections which it has been the labor of their lives to form; but to give 
due effect to this liberality and to make that effect permanent, it is necessary that 
the State step in and contribute its sanction and its assistance; and in many cases 
the very munificence of spirit which has formed an immense collection and’ given 
birth to the wish to make it national has, by its own excess, made that wish power- 
less without the active aid of the legislature. The actual cost, and still more the 


inherent value, of the collections of Sloane, Elgin, and Angerstein made them in 
reality gifts to the nation, although they could never have been acquired (without 


The Principles of Museum Administration. 239 


gross injustice to the descendants of the large-minded coJlectors) had not Parlia- 
ment made certain pecuniary advances on account of them. While but for the 
foundation of the British Museum and of the National Gallery, the collections of 
Cracherode and Holwell Carr, of Beaumont, of Sir Joseph Banks, and of King George 
III would have continued in the hands of individuals. 


C.—PUBLIC APPRECIATION OF THE HIGHER FUNCTION OF MUSEUMS. 


1. Museums, libraries, reading rooms, and parks have been referred 
to by some wise person as ‘‘ passionless reformers,’’ and no better term 
can be employed to describe one of the most important of their uses. 


ce ”) 


CommENT.—The appreciation of the utility of museums to the great public lies 
at the foundation of what is known as ‘‘the modern museum idea.’’ No one has 
written more eloquently of the moral influence of museums than Mr. Ruskin, and 
whatever may be thought of the manner in which he has carried his idea into prac- 
tice in his workingmen’s museum, near Sheffield, his influence has undoubtedly 
done much to stimulate the development of the ‘‘people’s museum.’’ The same 
spirit inspired Sir Henry Cole when he said to the people of Birmingham in 1894: 
“Tf you wish your schools of science and art to be effective, your health, your air, 
and your food to be wholesome, your life to be long, and your manufactures to 
improve, your trade to increase, and your people to be civilized, you must have 
museums of science and art to illustrate the principles of life, wealth, nature, 
science, art, and beauty.”’ 

And I never shall forget the words of the late Sir Philip Cunliffe Owen, who said 
to me some years ago: ‘‘ We educate our working people in the public schools, give 
them a love for refined and beautiful objects, and stimulate them in a desire for 
information. ‘They leave school, go into the pursuits of town life, and have no 
means provided for the gratification of the tastes they have been forced to acquire, 
It is as much the duty of the Government to provide them with museums and 
libraries for their higher education as it is to establish schools for their primary 
instruction.”’ 


2. The development of the modern museum idea is due to Great Britain 
in much greater degree than to any other nation, and the movement dates 
from the period of the great exhibition of 1851, which is recognized upon 
the western side of the Atlantic as marking an epoch in the intellectual 
progress of English-speaking peoples. ~The munificence with which the 
national museums of Great Britain have been supported, and the liberal- 
minded manner in which they have been utilized in the cause of popular 
education and for the promotion of the highest intellectual ideals, has 
been and still is a source of inspiration to all in America who are laboring 
for similar results. 

3. The future of the museum, as of all similar public institutions, is 
inseparably associated with the continuance of modern civilization, by 
means of which those sources of enjoyment which were formerly accessi- 
ble to the rich only, are now, more and more, placed in the possession 
and ownership of all the people (an adaption of what Jevons has called 
“the principle of the multiplication of utility’’), with the result that 
objects which were formerly accessible only to the wealthy, and seen by 


240 Memortal of George Brown Goode. 


a very small number of people each year, are now held in common owner- 
ship and enjoyed by hundreds of thousands. 

In this connection the maintenance of museums should be especially 
favored, because these, more than any other public agency, are invita- 
tions to the wealthy owners of private treasures to give them in perpetuity 
to the public. 

4. If it be possible to sum up in a single sentence the principles which 
have been discussed in the present paper, this sentence would be phrased 
in these words: The degree of civilization to which any nation, city, 
or province has attained is best shown by the character of its public 
museums and the liberality with which they are maintained. 


Report of U, S, National Museum, 1897. Part II. PLATE 44, 


JOSEPH HENRY. 


THE MUSEUMS OF THE FUTURE. 


GEORGE BROWN GOODE, 


Assistant Secretary, Smithsonian Institution, in charge 
of the U.S. National Museum, 


16 241 


NAT MUS 97, PT 2 


THE MUSEUMS OF THE FUTURE’ 


By GEORGE BROWN GOODE, 


Assistant Secretary, Smithsonian Institution, in charge of the UV. S. National 
Museum. 


There is an Oriental saying that the distance between ear and eye is 
small, but the difference between hearing and seeing very great. 

More terse and not tess forcible is our own proverb, ‘‘’To see is to 
know,’’ which expresses a growing tendency in the human mind. 

In this busy, critical, and skeptical age each man is seeking to know 
all things, and life is too short for many words. The eye is used more 
and more, the ear less and less, and in the use of the eye, descriptive 
writing is set aside for pictures, and pictures in their turn are replaced 
by actual objects. In the schoolroom the diagram, the blackboard, and 
the object lesson, unknown thirty years ago, are universally employed. 
The public lecturer uses the stereopticon to reenforce his words, the 
editor illustrates his journals and magazines with engravings a hundred- 
fold more numerous and elaborate than his predecessor thought needful, 
and the merchant and manufacturer recommend their wares by means of 
vivid pictographs. ‘The local fair of old has grown into the great expo- 
sition, often international and always under some governmental patron- 
age, and thousands of such have taken place within forty years, from 
Japan to Tasmania, and from Norway to Brazil. 

Amid such tendencies, the museum, it would seem, should find con- 
genial place, for it is the most powerful and useful auxiliary of all sys- 
tems of teaching by means of object lessons. 

The work of organizing museums has not kept pace with the times. 
The United States is far behind the spirit of its own people, and less 
progressive than England, Germany, France, Italy, or Japan. We have, 
it is true, two or three centers of great activity in museum work, but 
there have been few new ones established within twenty years, and many 
of the old ones are ina state of torpor. This can not long continue. 
The museum of the past must be set aside, reconstructed, transformed 
from a cemetery of bric-a-brac into a nursery of living thoughts. The 
museum of the future must stand side by side with the library and the 


1A lecture delivered before the Brooklyn Institute, February 28, 1889. 
243 


244 Memortal of George Brown Goode. 


laboratory, as a part of the teaching equipment of the college and uni- 
versity, and in the great cities cooperate with the public library as one 
of the principal agencies for the enlightenment of the people. 

The true significance of the word museum may best be appreciated 
through an allusion to the ages which preceded its origin—when our 
ancestors, hundreds of generations removed, were in the midst of those 
great migrations which peopled Europe with races originally seated in 
central Asia. 

It has been well said that the early history of Greece is the first chap- 
ter in the political and intellectual life of Europe. ‘To the history of 
Greece let us go for the origin of the museum idea, which, in its present 
form, seems to have found its only congenial home among the European 
offshoots of the great Indo-Germanic or Aryan division of the world’s 
inhabitants. Long centuries before the invention of written languages 
there lived along the borders of northern Greece, upon the slopes of 
Mount Olympus and Helicon, a people whom the later Greeks called 
‘“’"Thracians,’’ a half-mythical race, whose language even has perished. 
They survived in memory, we are told, as a race of bards, associated 
with that peculiar legendary poetry of pre-Homeric date, in which the 
powers of nature were first definitely personified. This poetry belonged, 
presumably, to an age when the ancestors of the Greeks had left their 
Indo-European home, but had not yet taken full possession of the lands 
which were afterwards Hellenic. The spirits of nature sang to their sen- 
sitive souls with the voice of brook and tree and bird, and each agency 
or form which their senses perceived was personified in connection with 
a system of worship. ‘There were spirits in every forest or mountain, 
but in Thrace alone dwelt the Muses—the spirits who know and who 
remember, who are the guardians of all wisdom, and who impart to their 
disciples the knowledge and the skill to write. 

Museums, in the language of Ancient Greece, were the homes of the 
Muses. ‘The first were in the groves of Parnassus and Helicon, and later 
they were temples in various parts of Helles. Soon, however, the mean- 
ing of the word changed, and it was used to describe a place of study, or 
a school. Athenzeus, in the second century, described Athens as ‘‘the 
museum of Greece,’’ and the name was applied to that portion of the 
palace of Alexandria which was set apart for the study of the sciences 
and which contained the famous Alexandrian library. The museum of 
Alexandria was a great unversity, the abiding place of men of science 
and letters, who were divided into many companies or colleges, for the 
support of each of which a handsome revenue was allotted. 

The Alexandrian museum was burned in the days of Cesar and 
Aurelian, and the term museum, as applied to a great public institution, 
dropped out of use from the fourth to the seventeenth century. The 
disappearance of a word is an indication that the idea for which it stood 
had also fallen into disfavor, and such, indeed, was the fact. 


Report of U. S. National Museum, 1897. Part II. PLATE 45. 


EDWARD HITCHCOCK. 


The Museums of the Future. 245 


The history of museum and library runs in parallel lines. It is not 
until the development of the arts and sciences has taken place, until an 
extensive written literature has grown up, and a distinct literary and 
scientific class has been developed, that it is possible for the modern 
library and museum to come into existence. The museum of the pres- 
ent is more unlike its old-time representative than is our library unlike 
its prototype. 

There were, in the remote past, galleries of pictures and sculpture as 
well as museums, socalled. Public collections of paintings and statuary 
were founded in Greece and Rome at a very early day. There was a 
gallery of paintings (Pinacotheca) in one of the marble halls of the 
Propyleeum at Athens, and in Rome there was a lavish public display of 
works of art. 

M. Dezobry, in his brilliant work upon ‘‘ Rome in the time of Augus- 
tus’? (Rome au sitcde d’ Auguste), described this phase of the Latin civili- 
zation in the first century before Christ. 

‘‘Ror many years,’’ remarks one of his characters, “‘the taste for 
paintings has been extending in a most extraordinary manner. In for- 
mer times they were only to be found in the temples, where they were 
placed, less for purposes of ornament than as an act of homage to the 
gods; now they are everywhere, not only in temples, in private houses, 
and in public halls, but also on outside walls, exposed freely to air and 
sunlight. Rome is one great picture gallery; the Forum of Augustus is 
gorgeous with paintings, and they may be seen also in the Forum of 
Czesar, in the Roman Forum, under the peristyles of many of the tem- 
ples, and especially in the porticos used for public promenades, some of 
which are literally filled with them. Thus everybody is enabled to enjoy 
them, and to enjoy them at all hours of the day.’’ 

The public men of Rome at a later period in its history were no less 
mindful of the claims of art. ‘They believed that the metropolis of a 
great nation should be adorned with all the best products of civilization. 
We are told by Pliny that when Czesar was dictator, he purchased for 
300,000 deniers two Greek paintings, which he caused to be publicly 
displayed, and that Agrippa placed many costly works of art in a hall 
which he built and bequeathed to the Roman people. Constantine 
gathered together in Constantinople the paintings and sculptures of the 
great masters, so that the city before its destruction became a great 
museum like Rome. 

‘The taste for works of art was in the days of the ancient civilizations 
generally prevalent throughout the whole Mediterranean region, and 
there is abundant reason to believe that there were prototypes of the 
modern museum in Persia, Assyria, Babylonia, and Egypt, as well as 
in Rome. 

Collections in natural history also undoubtedly existed, though we 
have no positive descriptions of them. Natural curiosities, of course, 


246 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


found their way into the private collections of monarchs, and were 
doubtless also in use for study among the savants in the Alexandrian 
museums. Aristotle, in the fourth century before Christ, had, itis said, 
an enormous grant of money for use in his scientific researches, and 
Alexander the Great, his patron, ‘‘took care to send to him a great 
variety of zoological specimens, collected in the countries which he had 
subdued,’’ and also ‘‘placed at his disposal several thousand persons, 
who were occupied in hunting, fishing, and making the observations 
which were necessary for completing his History of Animals.” If 
human nature has not changed more than we suppose, Aristotle must 
have had a great museum of natural history. 

When the Roman capital was removed to Byzantium, the arts and 
letters of Kurope began to decline. The church was unpropitious, and 
the invasions of the northern barbarians destroyed everything. In 476, 
with the close of the Western Empire, began a period of intellectual tor- 
pidity which was to last for a thousand years. It was in Bagdad and 
Cordova that science and letters were next to be revived, and Africa was 
to surpass Europe in the exhibit of its libraries. 

With the renaissance came a period of new life for collectors. ‘The 
churches of southern Europe became art galleries, and monarchs and 
noblemen and ecclesiastical dignitaries collected books, manuscripts, 
sculptures, pottery, and gems, forming the beginnings of collections 
which have since grown into public museums. Some of these collec- 
tions doubtless had their first beginnings in the midst of the Dark Ages 
within the walls of feudal castles or the larger monasteries, but their 
number was small, and they must have consisted chiefly of those objects 
so nearly akin to literature as especially to command the attention of 
bookish men. 

The idea of a great national museum of science and art was first worked 
out by Lord Bacon in his New Atlantis, a philosophical romance, pub- 
lished at the close of the seventeenth century. ; 

The first scientific museum actually founded was that begun at Oxford, 
in 1677, by Elias Ashmole, still known as the Ashmolean Museum, com- 
posed chiefly of natural-history specimens, collected by the botanists 
Tradescant, father and son, in Virginia and in the north of Africa. 
Soon after, in 1753, the British Museum was established by act of 
Parliament, inspired by the will of Sir Hans Sloane, who, dying in 1749, 
left to the nation his invaluable collection of books, manuscripts, and 
curiosities. 

Many of the great national museums of Europe had their origin in the 
private collections of monarchs. France claims the honor of having been 
the first to change a royal into a national museum when, in 1789, the 
Louvre came into the possession of a republican government. 

It is very clear, however, that democratic England stands several dec- 
ades in advance—its act, moreover, being one of deliberate founding 


The Museums of the Future. 247 


rather than a species of conquest. A century before this, when Charles I 
was beheaded by order of Parliament, his magnificent private collec- 
tion was dispersed. What a blessing it would be to England to-day 
if the idea of founding a national museum had been suggested to the 
Cromwellians. The intellectual life of America is so closely bound to 
that of England, that the revival of interest in museums and in popular 
education at the middle of the present century is especially significant 
to us. 

The great exhibition of 1851 was one of the most striking features of 
the industrial revolution in England, that great transformation which, 
following closely upon the introduction of railroads, turned England, 
feudal and agricultural, into England democratic and commercial. This 
exhibition marked an epoch in the intellectual progress of English- 
speaking peoples. ‘‘The great exhibition,’’ writes a popular novel- 
ist—a social philosopher as well—‘‘did one great service for country 
people: It taught them how easy it is to get to London, and what a 
mine of wealth, especially for after-memory and purposes of conversa- 
tion, exists in that great place.’’ 

Our own Centennial Exhibition in 1876 was almost as great a revela- 
tion to the people of the United States. The thoughts of the country 
were opened to many things before undreamed of. One thing we may 
regret, that we have no such widespread system of museums as that 
which has developed in the motherland, with South Kensington as its 
administrative center. 

Under the wise administration of the South Kensington staff, an out- 
growth of the events of 1851, a great system of educational museums 
has been developed all through the United Kingdom. A similar exten- 
sion of public museums in this country would be quite in harmony with 
the spirit of the times, as shown in the present efforts toward university 
extensions. 

England has had nearly forty years in which to develop these ten- 
dencies and we but thirteen since our exhibition. May we not hope 
that within a like period of time and before the year 1914 the United 
States may have attained the position which England now occupies, at 
least in the respect of popular interest and substantial governmental 
support. 

There are now over one hundred and fifty public museums in the 
United Kingdom, all active and useful. ‘The museum systems of Great 
Britain are, it seems to me, much closer to the ideal which America 
should follow than are those of either France or Germany. ‘They are 
designed more thoughtfully to meet the needs of the people, and are 
more intimately intertwined with the policy of national, popular educa- 
tion. Sir Henry Cole, the founder of the ‘‘department of science and 
art,’’ speaking of the purpose of the museum under his care, said to 
the people of Birmingham in 1874: ‘‘If you wish your schools of science 


248 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


and art to be effective, your health, the air, and your food to be whole- 
some, your life to be long, your manufactures to improve, your trade 
to increase, and your people to be civilized, you must have museums 
of science and art, to illustrate the principles of life, health, nature, 
science, art, and beauty.’’ 

Again, in words as applicable to America of to-day as to Britain 
in 1874, said he: ‘‘A thorough education and a knowledge of science 
and art are vital to the nation and to the place it holds at present in the 
civilized world. Science and art are the lifeblood of successful produc- 
tion. All civilized nations are running a race with us, and our national 
decline will date from the period when we go to sleep over the work of 
education, science, andart. What has been done is at the mere threshold 
of the work yet to be done.’’ 

The museums of the future in this democratic land should be adapted 
to the needs of the mechanic, the factory operator, the day laborer, the 
salesman, and the clerk, as much as to those of the professional man and 
the man of leisure. It is proper that there be laboratories and profes- 
sional libraries for the development of the experts who are to organize, 
arrange, and explain the museums. — It is proper that the laboratories be 
utilized to the fullest extent for the credit of the institution to which 
they belong. No museum can grow and be respected which does not 
each year give additional proofs of its claims to be considered a center of 
learning. 

On the other hand, the public have a right to ask that much shall be 
done directly in their interest. They will gladly allow the museum 
officer to use part of his time in study and experiment. They will take 
pride in the possession by the museum of tens of thousands of specimens, 
interesting only to the specialists, hidden away perpetually from public 
view, but necessary for purpose of scientific research. ‘These are founda- 
tions of the intellectual superstructure which gives the institution its 
standing. 

Still, no pains must be spared in the presentation of the material in the 
exhibition halls. The specimens must be prepared in the most careful 
and artistic manner, and arranged attractively in well-designed cases 
and behind the clearest of giass. Each object must bear a label, giving 
its name and history so fully that all the probable questions of the visitor 
are answered in advance. Books of reference must be kept in convenient 
places. Colors of walls, cases, and labels must be restful and quiet, and 
comfortable seats should be everywhere accessible, for the task of the 
museum visitor is a weary one at best. 

In short, the public museum is, first of all, for the benefit of the pub- 
lic. When the officers are few in number, each must of necessity devote 
a considerable portion of his time to the public halls. When the staff 
becomes larger, it is possible by specialization of work to arrange that 
certain men may devote their time uninterruptedly to laboratory work, 


Report of U, S. National Museum, 1897. Part Il. PLATE 46, 


The Museums of the Future. 249 


while others are engaged in the increase of the collections and their 
installation. 

I hope and firmly believe that every American community with inhab- 
itants to the number of five thousand or more will within the next 
half century have a public library, under the management of a trained 
librarian. Be it ever so small, its influence upon the people would be 
of untold value. One of the saddest things in this life is to realize 
that in the death of the elder members of a community so much that is 
precious in the way of knowledge and experience is lost to the world. 
It is through the agency of books that mankind benefits by the toil of 
past generations and is able to avoid their errors. 

In these days, when printing is cheap and authors are countless, that 
which is good and true in human thought is in danger of being entirely 
overlooked. The daily papers, and above all the overgrown and uncanny 
Sunday papers, are like weeds in a garden, whose rank leaves not only 
consume the resources of the soil but hide from view the more modest 
and more useful plants of slower growth. 

Most suggestive may we find an essay on Capital and Culture in 
America, which recently appeared in one of the English reviews. ‘The 
author, a well-known Anglo-American astronomer, boldly asserts that— 

Year by year it becomes clearer that, despite the large absolute increase in the 
number of men and women of culture in America, the nation is deteriorating in 
regard to culture. Among five hundred towns where formerly courses of varied 
entertainments worthy of civilized communities—concerts, readings, lectures on 
artistic, literary, and scientific subjects, etc.—were successfully arranged season 
after season, scarcely fifty now feel justified in continuing their efforts in the cause 
of culture, knowing that the community will no longer support them. Scientific, 


literary, and artistic societies, formerly flourishing, are now dying, or dead in many 
cities which have in the meantime increased in wealth and population. 


He instances Chicago as typical of an important portion of America, 
and cites evidences of decided deterioration within sixteen years. 

The people’s museum should be much more than a house full of speci- 
mens in glass cases. It should be a house full of ideas, arranged with 
the strictest attention to system. 

I once tried to express this thought by saying, ‘“‘An efficient educa- 
tional museum may be described as a collection of instructive labels, each 
illustrated by a well-selected specimen.’’ 

The museum, let me add, should be more than a collection of speci- 
mens well arranged and well labeled. Like the library, it should be under 
the constant supervision of one or more men well informed, scholarly, 
and withal practical, and fitted by tastes and training to aid in the edu- 
cational work. 

I should not organize the museum primarily for the use of the people 
in their larval or school-going stage of existence. The public-school 
teacher, with the illustrated text-book, diagrams, and other appliances, 
is in these days a professional outfit which is usually quite sufficient to 


250 Memortal of George Brown Goode. 


enable him to teach his pupils. School days last, at the most, only from 
five to fifteen years, and they end with the majority of mankind before 
their minds have reached the stage of growth most favorable for the 
reception and assimilation of the best and most useful thought. Why 
should we be crammed in the times of infancy and kept in a state of 
mental starvation during the period which follows, from maturity to old 
age, a state which is disheartening and unnatural, all the more because. 
of the intellectual tastes which have been stimulated and partially 
formed by school life. 

The boundary line between the library and the museum is neither 
straight nor plain. ‘The former, if its scope be rightly indicated by its 
name, is primarily a place for books. The latter is a depository for 
objects of every kind, books not excepted. 

The British Museum, with its libraries, its pictures, its archeological 
galleries, its anthropological, geological, botanical, and zoological col- 
lections, is an example of the most comprehensive interpretation of the 
term. 

Professor Huxley has described the museum as ‘‘a consultative library 
of objects.’’ This definition is suggestive but unsatisfactory. It relates 
only to the contents of the museum, as distinguished from those of the 
library, and makes no reference to the differences in the methods of their 
administration. ‘The treasures of the library must be examined one at 
a time and by one person at a time; their use requires long-continued 
attention and their removal from their proper places in the system of 
arrangement. Those of the museum are displayed to public view, in 
groups, in systematic sequence, so that they have a collective as well as 
an individual significance. Furthermore, much of their meaning may 
be read at a glance. 

The museum cultivates the powers of observation, and the casual 
visitor even makes discoveries for himself and under the guidance of 
the labels forms his own impressions. In the library one studies the 
impressions of others. The library is most useful to the educated, the 
museum to educated and uneducated alike, to the masses as well as to 
the few, and is a powerful stimulant to intellectual activity in either 
class. ‘The influence of the museum upon a community is not so deep 
as that of the library, but extends to a much larger number of people. 

The National Museum has 300,000 visitors a year, each of whom car- 
ries away a certain number of new thoughts. 

The two ideas may be carried out, side by side, in the same building, 
and if need be under the same management, not only without antago- 
nism, but with advantage. 

That the proximity of a good library is absolutely essential to the 
usefulness of a museum will be admitted by everyone. 

I am confident also that a museum, wisely organized and properly 
arranged, is certain to benefit the library near which it stands in many 


The Museums of the Future. 251 


ways through its power to stimulate interest in books, thus increasing 
the general popularity of the library and enlarging its endowment. 

Many books, and valuable ones, would be required in the first kind 
of museum work, but it is not intended to enter into competition with 
the library. (When necessary, volumes could be duplicated.) It is 
very often the case, however, that books are more useful and safer in the 
museum than on the library shelves, for in the museum they may be seen 
daily by thousands, while in the library their very existence is forgotten 
by all except their custodian. 

Audubon’s Birds of North America is a book which everyone has 
heard of and which everyone wants to see at least once in his lifetime. 
In a library, it probably is not examined by ten persons in a year; ina 
museum, the volumes exposed to view in a-glass case, a few of the most 
striking plates attractively framed and hung upon the wall near at hand, 
it teaches a lesson ‘to every passer-by. 

The library may be called upon for aid by the museum in many direc- 
tions. Pictures are often better than specimens to illustrate certain ideas. 
The races of man and their distribution can only be shown by pictures 
and maps. Atlases of ethnological portraits and maps are out of place in 
a library if there is a museum near by in which they can be displayed. 
They are not even members of the class described by Lamb as ‘‘ books 
which are not books.’’ ‘They are not books, but museum specimens mas- 
querading in the dress of books. 

There is another kind of depository which, though in external features 
so similar to the museum, and often confused with it in name as well as 
in thought, is really very unlike it. Thisisthe art gallery. ‘The scien- 
tific tendencies of modern thought have permeated every department of 
human activity, even influencing the artist. Many art galleries are now 
called museums, and the assumption of the name usually tends toward 
the adoption in some degree of a scientific method of installation. ‘The 
difference between a museum anda gallery is solely one of method of 
management. The Musée des Thermes—the Cluny Museum—in Paris 
is, notwithstanding its name, simply a gallery of curious objects. Its 
contents are arranged primarily with reference to their effect. The old 
monastery in which they are placed affords a magnificent example of 
the interior decorative art of the Middle Ages. 

The Cluny Museum is a most fascinating and instructive place. I 
would not have it otherwise than it is, but it will always be unique, the 
sole representative of its kind. The features which render it attractive 

vould be ruinous to any museum. It is, more than any other that I 
know, acollection arranged from the standpoint of the artist. ‘The same 
material, in the hands of a Klemm or a Pitt-Rivers, arranged to show 
the history of human thought, would, however, be much more interest- 
ing, and, if the work were judiciously done, would lose none of its 
esthetic allurements. 


252 Memortal of George Brown Goode. 


Another collection of the same general character as the one just 
described is the Soane Museum in London. Another, the famous col- 
lection of crown jewels and metal work in the Green Vaults at Dresden, 
a counterpart of which may be cited in the collection in the Tower of 
London. ‘The Museum of the Hohenzollerns in Berlin and the Museum 
of the City of Paris are of necessity unique. Such collections can not 
be created. They grow in obedience to the action of natural law, just 
as a tree or a sponge may grow. 

The city which is in the possession of such an heirloom is blessed just 
as is the possessor of a historic surname or he who inherits the cumu- 
lative genius of generations of gifted forefathers. The possession of one 
or a score of such shrines does not, however, free any community from 
the obligation to form a museum for purposes of education and scientific 
research. 

The founding of a public museum in a city like Brooklyn is a work 
whose importance can scarcely be overestimated. The founders of in- 
stitutions of this character do not often realize how much they are doing 
for the future. Opportunity such as that which is now open to the 
members of the Brooklyn Institute occur only once in the lifetime of a 
nation. It is by no means improbable that the persons now in this room 
have it in their power to decide whether, in the future intellectual prog- 
ress of this nation, Brooklyn is to lead or to follow far in the rear. 

Many of my hearers are doubtless familiar with that densely popu- 
lated wilderness, the east end of London, twice as large as Brooklyn, 
yet with scarce an intellectual oasis in its midst. Who can say how dif- 
ferent might have been its condition to-day if Walter Besant’s apostolic 
labors had begun a century sooner, and if the People’s Palace, that won- 
derful materialization of a poet’s dream, had been for three generations 
brightening the lives of the citizens of the Lower Hamlets and Hackney ? 

Libraries and museums do not necessarily spring up where they are 
needed. Our governments, Federal, State, and municipal, are not ‘‘ pa- 
ternal’’ in spirit. They are less so even in practical working than in 
England, where, notwithstanding the theory that all should be left to 
private effort, the Government, under the leadership of the late Prince 
Consort and of the Prince of Wales, has done wonderful things for all 
the provincial cities, as well as for London, in the encouragement of 
libraries, museums, art, and industrial education. 

However much the state may help, the private individual must lead, 
organize, and prepare the way. ‘‘It is universally admitted,’’ said the 
Marquis of Lansdowne in 1847, ‘‘that governments are the worst of cul- 
tivators, the worst of manufacturers, the worst of traders,’’ and Sir 
Robert Peel said in similar strain that ‘‘the action of government is 
torpid at best.’’ 

In beginning a museum the endowment is of course the most essential 
thing, especially in a great city like Brooklyn, which has a high ideal of 
what is due to the intelligence of its populace and to the civic dignity. 


Report of U. S. National Museum, 1897. Part Il. PLATE 47. 


b> | 


a 7 To), oe ee 


The Museums of the Future. 253 


Unremunerated service in museum administration, though it may be 
enthusiastically offered and conscientiously performed, will in the end 
fail to be satisfactory. Still more is it impossible for a respectable 
museum to grow up without liberal expenditure for the acquisition of 
collections and their installation. 

Good administration is not to be had for nothing. As to the qualifica- 
tion of a museum administrator, whether it be for a museum of science 
or a museum of art, it is perhaps superfluous to say that he should be the 
very best obtainable, a man of ability, enthusiasm, and, withal, of experi- 
ence; for the administration of museums and exhibitions has become of 
late years a profession, and careful study of methods of administration is 
indispensable. If the new administrator has not had experience he must 
needs gain it at the expense of the establishment which employes him— 
an expense of which delay, waste, and needless experiment form consid- 
erable elements. 

No investment is more profitable to a museum than that in the salary 
fund. Around a nucleus of men of established reputation and adminis- 
trative tact will naturally grow up a staff of volunteer assistants whose 
work, assisted and directed in the best channels, will be of infinite value. 

The sinews and brains of the organism being first provided, the 
development of its body still remains. The outer covering, the dress, 
can wait. It is much better to hire buildings for temporary use, or to 
build rude fireproof sheds, than to put up a permanent museum building 
before at least a provisional idea of its personnel and contents has been 
acquired. 

As has been already said, a museum must spend money in the acquisition 
of collections, and a great deal of money. ‘The British Museum has 
already cost the nation for establishment and maintenance not far from 
$30,000,000. Up to 1882 over $1,500,000 had been expended in purchase 
of objects for the art collections at South Kensington alone. 

Such expenditures are usually good investments of national funds, 
however. In 1882, after about twenty-five years of experience, the 
buildings and contents of the South Kensington Museum had cost the 
nation about $5,000,000, but competent authorities were satisfied that 
an auction on the premises could not bring less than $100,000,000. For 
every dollar spent, however, gifts will come in to the value of many dollars. 
In this connection it may not be amiss to quote the words of one of the 
most experienced of English museum administrators (presumably Sir 
Philip Cunliffe Owen) when asked many years ago whether Americans 
might not develop great public institutions on the plan of those at 
Kensington: 

Let them plant the thing [he said], and it can’t help growing, and most likely 
beyond their powers—as it has been almost beyond ours—to keep up with it. What 
.is wanted first of all is one or two good good brains, with the means of erecting a 


good building on a piece of ground considerably larger than is required for that 
building. Where there have been secnred substantial, luminous galleries for exhi- 


254 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


bition, in a fireproof building, and these are known to be carefully guarded by night 
and day, there can be no need to wait long for treasures to flow into it. Above all, 
let your men take care of the interior and not set out wasting their strength and 
money on external grandeur and decoration. ‘The inward built up rightly, the out- 
ward will be added in due season." 


Much will, of course, be given to any museum which has the con- 
fidence of the public—much that is of great value, and much that is 
useless. | 

The Trojans of old distrusted the Greeks when they came bearing 
gifts. The museum administrator must be on his guard against every 
one who proffers gifts. An unconditional donation may be usually 
accepted without hesitation, but a gift coupled with conditions is, except 
in very extraordinary cases, far from a benefaction. 

A donor demands that his collection shall be exhibited as a whole, and 
kept separate from all others. When his collection is monographic in 
character and very complete, it is sometimes desirable to accept it on 
such conditions. As a rule, however, it is best to try to induce the 
donor to allow his collections to be merged in the general series—each 
object being separately and distinctively labeled. I would not be under- 
stood to say that the gift of collections is not, under careful manage- 
ment, a most beneficial source of increase to a public collection. I 
simply wish to call attention to the fact that a museum which accepts 
without reserve gifts of every description, and fails to reenforce these 
gifts by extensive and judicious purchasing, is certain to develop in an 
unsystematical and ill-balanced way. 

Furthermore, unless a museum be supported by liberal and constantly 
increasing grants from some State or municipal treasury, it will ulti- 
mately become suffocated. It is essential that every museum, whether 
of science or art, should from the start make provision for laboratories 
and storage galleries as well as for exhibition halls. 

All intellectual work may be divided into two classes, the one tending 
toward the increase of knowledge, the other toward its diffusion—the 
one toward investigation and discovery, the other toward the education of 
the people and the application of known facts to promoting their material 
welfare. ‘The efforts of learned men are sometimes applied solely to one 
of these departments of effort, sometimes to both, and it is generally 
admitted by the most advanced teachers that, for their students as well as 
for themselves, the happiest results are reached by investigation and 
instruction simultaneously. Still more is this true of institutions of 
learning. ‘The college which imparts only secondhand knowledge to its 
students belongs to a stage of civilization which is fast being left behind. 
The museum likewise must, in order to perform its proper functions, 
contribute to the advancement of learning through the increase as well 
as through the diffusion of knowledge. 


*Conway, Travels in South Kensington, p. 26. 


The Museums of the Future. 255 


We speak of educational museums and of the educational method of 
installation so frequently that there may be danger of inconsistency in 
the use of the term. An educational museum, as it is usually spoken 
of, is one in which an attempt is made to teach the unprofessional visitor— 
an institution for popular education by means of labeled collections, and 
it may be also by popular lectures. A college museum, although used 
as an aid to advanced instruction, is not an ‘‘educational museum’’ in 
the ordinary sense; nor does a museum of research, like the Museum of 
Comparative Zoology in Cambridge, Massachusetts, belong to this class, 
although to a limited extent it attempts and performs popular educa- 
tional work in addition to its other functions. 

In the National Museum in Washington the collections are divided 
into two great classes—the exhibition series, which constitutes the 
educational portion of the Museum, and is exposed to public view with 
all possible accessions for public entertainment and instruction, and the 
study series, which is kept in the scientific laboratories, and is scarcely 
examined except by professional investigators. 

In every properly conducted museum the collections must from the 
very beginning divide themselves into these two classes, and in planning 
for its administration provision should be made not only for the exhibi- 
tion of objects in glass cases, but for the preservation of large collections 
not available for exhibition, to be used for the studies of a very limited 
number of specialists. 

Lord Bacon, who, as we have noticed, was the first to whom occurred 
the idea of a great museum of science and art, complained three cen- 
turies ago, in his book On the Advancement of Learning, that up to 
that time the means for intellectual progress had been used exclusively 
for ‘‘amusement’’ and ‘‘teaching,’’ and not for the ‘‘augmentation of 
science.’ 

Tt will undoubtedly be found desirable for certain museums, founded 
for local effect, to specialize mainly in the direction of popular education. 
If they can not also provide for a certain amount of scholarly endeavor 
in connection with the other advantages, it would be of the utmost 
importance that they should be assorted by a system of administrative 
cooperation with some institution which is in the position of being a 
center of original work. 

The general character of museums should be clearly determined at its 
very inception. Specialization and division of labor are essential for 
institutions as wellas for individuals. It is only a great national museum 
which can hope to include all departments and which can with safety 
encourage growth in every direction. 

A city museum, even in a great metropolis like Brooklyn, should, 
if possible, select certain special lines of activity and pursue them with 
the intention of excelling. If there are already beginnings in many 
’ directions, it is equally necessary to decide which lines of development 


256 Memortal of George Brown Goode, 


are to be favored in preference to all others. Many museums fail to 
make this choice at the start, and instead of steering toward some defi- 
nite point, drift hither and thither, and, it may be, are foundered in 
mid-ocean. 

There is no reason why the museum of the Brooklyn Institute may not 
in time attain to world-wide fame and attract students and visitors from 
afar. It would be wise, perhaps, in shaping its policy to remember that 
in the twin city of New York are two admirable museums which may be 
met more advantageously in cooperation than in rivalry. Brooklyn may 
appropriately have its own museum of art and its museum of natural 
history, but they should avoid the repetition of collections already so near 
at hand. | 

In selecting courses for the development of a museum, it may be useful 
to consider what are the fields open to museum work. 

As a matter of convenience museums are commonly classed in two 
- groups—those of science and those of art, and in Great Britain the great - 
national system is mainly under the control of The Science and Art 
Department of the Committee of Council on Education. 

The classification is not entirely satisfactory, since it is based upon 
methods of arrangement, rather than upon the nature of the objects 
to be arranged, and since it leaves a middle territory (only partially occu- 
pied by the English museum men of either department), a great mass of 
museum material of the greatest moment both in regard to its interest 
and its adaptability for purposes of public instruction. 

On the one side stand the natural history collections, undoubtedly best 
to be administrated by the geologist, botanist, and zoologist. On the 
other side are the fine art collections, best tobe arranged from an esthetic 
standpoint, by artists. Between is a territory which no English word 
can adequately describe—which the Germans call Culturgeschichte—the 
natural history of cult, or civilization, of man and his ideas and achieve- 
ments. ‘The museums of science and art have not yet learned how to 
partition this territory. An exact classification of museums is not at 
present practicable, nor will it be until there has been some redistribu- 
tion of the collections which they contain. It may be instructive, how- 
ever, to pass in review the principal museums of the world, indicating 
briefly their chief characteristics. 

Every great nation has its museum of nature. ‘The natural history 
department of the British Museum, recently removed from the heart of 
London to palatial quarters in South Kensington, is probably the most 
extensive—with its three great divisions, zoological, botanical, and geolog- 
ical. ‘The Musée d’ Histoire Naturelle, in the garden of plants in Paris, 
founded in 1795, with its galleries of anatomy, anthropology, zoology, 
botany, mineralogy, and geology, is one of the most extensive, but far 
less potent in science now than in the days of Cuvier, Lamarck, St. 
Hilaire, Jussieu, and Brongniart. In Washington, again, there is a 


Report of U. S. National Museum, 1897. Part Il, PLATE 48. 


ANDREW ATKINSON HUMPHREYS. 


The Museums of the Future. 257 


» National Museum with anthropological, zoological, botanical, mineral- 
ogical, and geological collections in one organization, together with a 
large additional department of arts and industries, or technology. 

Passing to specialized natural history collections, perhaps the most 
noteworthy are those devoted to zoology, and chief among them that 
in our own American Cambridge. ‘The Museum of Comparative Zool- 
ogy, founded by the Agassizes ‘‘to illustrate the history of creation, 
as far as the present state of knowledge reveals that history,’’ was in 
1887 pronounced by the English naturalist, Alfred Russell Wallace, ‘‘ 
be far in advance of similar institutions in Kurope as an educational 
institution, whether as regards the general public, the private student, 
or the specialist.’’ 

Next to Cambridge, after the zoological section of the museums of 
London and Paris, stands the collections in the Imperial Cabinet in 
Vienna, and those of the zoological museums in Berlin, Leyden, Copen- 
hagen, and Christiania. 

Among botanical museums, that in the Royal Gardens at Kew, near 
London, is preeminent, with its colossal herbarium, containing the finest 
collection in the world, and its special museum of economic botany, 
founded in 1847, both standing in the midst of a collection of living 
plants. ‘There is also in Berlin the Royal Botanical Museum, founded 
in 1818 as the Royal Herbarium; in St. Petersburg, the Herbaria of tke 
Imperial Botanical Garden. 

Among the geological and mineralogical collections the mineral cabinet 
in Vienna, arranged in the imperial castle, is among the first. 

The Museum of Practical Geology in London, which is attached to 
the Geological Survey of the United Kingdom, was founded in 1837, to 
exhibit the collections of the survey, in order to ‘‘show the applications 
of geology to the useful purposes of life.’’ Like every other healthy 
museum, it soon had investigations in progress in connection with its 
educational work, and many very important discoveries have been made 
in its laboratories. It stands in the very first rank of museums for po; - 
ular instruction, the arrangement of the exhibition halls being most 
admirable. Of museums of anatomy there are thirty of considerable 
magnitude, all of which have grown up in connection with schools of 
medicine and surgery, except the magnificent Army Medical Museum in 
Washington. 

The Medical Museum of the Royal College of Surgeons in London is 
probably first in importance. The collections of St. Thomas’s, Guy’s, 
St. George’s, and other hospitals are very rich in anatomical and patho- 
logical specimens. ‘The oldest public anatomical museum in London is 
that of St. Bartholomew’s. 

Paris, Edinburgh, and Dublin have large anatomical and materia 
medica collections. Asa rule, the medical museums of Europe are con- 
nected with universities. Doctor Billings, curator of the Army Medical 

NAT MUS 97, PT 2 Ly 


to 


258 Memortal of George Brown Goode. 


Museum in Washington, has traced accurately the growth of medical 
collections both at home and abroad, and from his address upon med- 
ical museums, as president of the Congress of American Physicians and 
Surgeons, delivered in 1888, the facts here stated relating to this class 
of museums have been gathered. The Army Medical Museum appar- 
ently owes its establishment to Doctor William A. Hammond, in 1862. 
The museum contained in 1888 more than 15,000 specimens, besides 
those contained in the microscopical department. ‘‘An ideal medical 
museum,’’ says Doctor Billings, ‘‘should be very complete in the depart- 
ment of preventive medicine or hygiene. It is a wide field, covering, as 
it does, air, water, food, clothing, habitations, geology, meteorology, occu- 
pations, etc., in their relations to the production or prevention of disease, 
and thus far has had little place in medical museums, being taken up as 
a specialty in the half dozen musetms of hygiene which now exist.’’ 

William Hunter formed the great Glasgow collection between the years 
1770 and 1800, and John Hunter, in 1787, opened the famous Hunterian 
Museum in London, bought by the English Government soon after (1799), 
and now known as the Museum of the Royal College of Surgeons. 

Paris is proud of the two collections at the School of Medicine, the 
Musée Orfila and the Musée Dupuytren, devoted, the one to normal, the 
other to pathological anatomy. 

Ethnographic museums are especially numerous and fine in the north- 
ern part of continental Europe. They were proposed more than half a 
century ago by the French geographer Jomard, and the idea was first 
carried into effect about 1840 in the establishment of the Danish Ethno- 
graphical Museum, which long remained the best in Europe. Within 
the past twenty years there has been an extraordinary activity in this 
direction. 

In Germany, besides the museums in Berlin, Dresden, and Leipsic, 
considerable collections have been founded in Hamburg and Munich. 
Austria has in Vienna two for ethnography, the Court Museum (Hof- 
Museum ) and the Oriental (Orientalisches) Museum. Holland has reor- 
ganized the National Ethnographical Museum (Rijks Ethnographisch 
Museum) in Leyden, and there are smaller collections in Amsterdam, 
Rotterdam, and The Hague. France has founded the Trocadero (Musée 
de Trocadéro). In Italy there is the important Prehistoric and Ethno- 
graphic Museum (Museo prehistorico ed ethnografico) in Rome, as well 
as the collection of the Propaganda, and there are museums in Florence 
and Venice. 

Ethnographical museums have also been founded in Christiania and 
Stockholm, the latter of which will include the rich material collection 
by Doctor Stolpe on the voyage of the frigate Vanadis around the world. 
In England there is less attention to the subject—the Christy collection 
in the British Museum being the only one specially devoted to ethnog- 
raphy, unless we include also the local Blackmore Museum in Salisbury. 


The Museums of the Future. 259 


In the United States the principal establishments arranged on the 
ethnographic plan are the Peabody Museum of Archzeology in Cam- 
bridge and the collections in the Peabody Academy of Sciences in Salem, 
and the American Museum of Natural History in New York. 

The ethnological collections in Washington are classified on a double 
system; in one of its features corresponding to that of the European; in 
the other, like the famous Pitt-Rivers collection at Oxford, arranged to 
show the evolution of culture and civilization without regard to race. 
This broader plan admits much material excluded by the advocates of 
ethnographic museums, who devote their attention almost exclusively to 
the primitive or non-European peoples. 

In close relation to the ethnographic museums are those which are 
devoted to some special field of human thought and interest. Most 
rémarkable among these, perhaps, is the Musée Guimet, recently re- 
moved from Lyons to Paris, which is intended to illustrate the history 
of religious ceremonial among all races of men. Other good examples 
of this class are some of those in Paris, such as the Musée de Marine, 
which shows not only the development of the merchant and naval marines 
of the country, but also, by trophies and other historical souvenirs, the 
history of the naval battles of the nation. ‘The Musée d’ Artillerie does 
for war, but less thoroughly, what the Marine Museum does in its own 
department, and there are similar museums in other countries. Of musi- 
cal museums, perhaps, the most important is the Musée Instrumental 
founded by Clapisson, attached to the Conservatory of Music in Paris. 
There is a magnificent collection of musical instruments at South Ken- 
sington, but its contents are selected in reference to their suggestiveness 
in decorative art. There are also large collections in the National 
Museum in Washington and in the Conservatory of Music in Boston, 
and the Metropolitan Museum in New York has recently been given a 
very full collection by Mrs. John Crosby Brown, of that city. 

There is a Theatrical Museum at the Académie Francaise in Paris, a 
Museum of Journalism in Antwerp, a Museum of Pedagogy in Paris, 
which has its counterpart in South Kensington. ‘These are professional, 
rather than scientific or educational, as are perhaps also the Museum of 
Practical Fish Culture at South Kensington and the Museums of Hy- 
giene in London and Washington. 

Archzeological collections are of two classes, those of prehistoric and 
historic archeology. The former are usually absorbed by the ethno- 
graphic museums, the latter by the art museums. ‘The value to the his- 
torian of archzeological collections, both historic and prehistoric, has long 
been understood. The museums of London, Paris, Berlin, and Rome 
need no comment. In Cambridge, New York, and Washington are 
immense collections of the remains of man in America in the pre-Colum- 
bian period, collections which are yearly growing in significance, as they 
are made the subject of investigation, and there is an immense amount of 


260 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


material of this kind in the hands of institutions and private collectors 
in all parts of the United States. 

The museum at Naples shows, so far as a museum can, the history of 
Pompeii at one period. ‘The museum of St. Germain, near Paris, ex- 
hibits the history of France in the time of the Gauls and of the Roman 
occupation. In Switzerland, especially at Neuchatel, the history of the 
inhabitants of the Lake Dwellings is shown. The Assyrian and Egyp- 
tian galleries in the British Museums are museums of themselves. 

Historical museums are manifold in character, and of necessity local 
in interest. Some relate to the history of provinces or cities. One 
of the oldest and best of these is the Markisch Provinzial Museum in 
Berlin; another is the museum of the city of Paris, recently opened in 
the Hotel Canaveral. Many historical societies have collections of this 
character. Some historical museums relate toa dynasty, as the Musetim 
of the Hohenzollerns in Berlin. 

The cathedrals of southern Europe, and St. Paul’s, in London, are in 
some degrees national or civic museums. ‘The Galileo Museum in Flor- 
ence, the Shakespeare Museum at Stratford, are good examples of the 
museums devoted to the memory of representative men, and the Mon- 
astery of St. Mark, in Florence, does as much as could be expected of 
any museum for the life of Savonarola. ‘The Soane Museum in London, 
the Thorvaldsen Museum in Copenhagen, are similar in purpose and 
result, but they are rather biographical than historical. There are also 
others which illustrate the history of a race, as the Bavarian National 
Museum in Nuremberg. 

The museums of fine art are the most costly and precious of all, since 
they contain the masterpieces of the world’s greatest painters and sculp- 
tors. In Rome, Florence, Venice, Naples, Bologna, Parma, Milan, 
Turin, Modena, Padua, Ferrara, Brescia, Sienna, and Pisa; in Munich, 
Berlin, Dresden, Vienna, and Prague; in Paris, and many provincial 
cities of France; in London, St. Petersburg, Madrid, Copenhagen, Brus- 
sels, Antwerp, and The Hague, are great collections, whose names are 
familiar to us all, each the depository of priceless treasures of art. Many 
of these are remarkable only for their pictures and statuary, and might 
with equal right be called picture galleries; others abound in the minor 
products of artists, and are museums in the broader sense. 

Chief among them is the Louvre, in Paris, with its treasures worth a 
voyage many times around the world to see; the Vatican, in Rome, with 
its three halls of antique sculptures, its Etruscans, Egyptian, Pagan, and 
Christian museums, its Byzantine gallery and its collection of medals; the 
Naples Museum (Musée di Studii) with its marvelous Pompeiian series; 
the Uffizi Museum in Florence, overflowing with paintings and sculptures, 
ancient and modern, drawings, engraved gems, enamels, ivories, tapes- 
tries, medals, and works of decorative art of every description. 


Report of U. S. National Museum, 1897. Part Il. PLATE 49. 


The Museums of the Future. 261 


There are special collections on the boundary line between art and 
ethnology, the manner of best installation for which has scarcely yet 
been determined. ‘The Louvre admits within its walls a museum of 
ship models (Musée de Marine). South Kensington includes musical 
instruments, and many other objects equally appropriate in an ethno- 
logical collection. Other art museums take up arms and armor, selected 
costumes, shoes, and articles of household use. Such objects, like por- 
celains, laces, medals, and metal work, appeal to the art museum admin- 
istrator through their decorations and graceful forms. For their uses he 
cares presumably nothing. As a consequence of this feeling only arti- 
cles of artistic excellence have been saved, and much has gone to destruc- 
tion which would be of the utmost importance to those who are now 
studying the history of human thought in the past. 

On the other hand, there is much in art museums which might to much 
better purpose be delivered to the ethnologist for use in his exhibition 
cases. “There is also much which the art museums, tied as they often 
are to traditionary methods of installation, might learn from the scien- 
tific museums. 

Many of the arrangements in the European art collections are calcu- 
lated to send cold shivers down the back of a sensitive visitor. The 
defects of these arrangements have been well described by a German 
critic, W. Burger. 

Our museums [he writes] are the veritable graveyards of arts, in which have 
been heaped up, with a tumulous-like promiscuousness, the remains which have 
been carried thither. A Venus is placed side by side with a Madonna, a satyr next 
toasaint. Luther is in close proximity to a Pope, a painting of a lady’s chamber 
next to that of a church. Pieces executed for churches, palaces, city halls, for a 
particular edifice, to teach some moral or historical truth, designed for some especial 
light, for some well-studied surrounding, all are hung pellmell upon the walls of 
some noncommital gallery—a kind of posthumous asylum, where a people, no 


longer capable of producing works of art, come to admire this magnificent gallery 


of débris. 


When a museum building has been provided, and the nucleus of a col- 
lection and an administrative staff are at hand, the work of museum- 
building begins, and this work, it is to be hoped, will not soon reach an 
end. A finished museum is a dead museum, and a dead museum is a 
useless museum. One thing should be kept prominently in mind by any 
organization which intends to found and maintain a museum, that the 
work will never be finished; that when the collections cease to grow, 
they begin todecay. A friend relating an experience in South Kensing- 
ton, said: ‘“‘I applied to a man who sells photographs of such edifices for 
pictures of the main building. He had none. ‘What, no photographs 
of the South Kensington Museum!’ I exclaimed, with some impatience. 
“Why, sir,’ replied the man mildly, ‘you see the museum doesn’t stand 
still long enough to be photographed.’ And so indeed it seems,’’ con- 


262 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


tinued Mr. Conway, ‘‘and this constant erection of new buildings and of 
new decorations on those already erected, is the physiognomical expres- 
sion of the new intellectual and zesthetic epoch which called the institu- 
tion into existence, and is through it gradually climbing to results which 
no man can foresee.’’ 

My prayer for the museums of the United States and for all other 
similar agencies of enlightenment is this—that they may never cease to 
increase. 


THE ORIGIN OF THE NATIONAL SCIENTIFIC AND EDUCA- 
TIONAL INSTITUTIONS OF THE UNITED STATES. 


BY 


GEORGE BROWN GOODE, 


Assistant Secretary, Smithsonian Institution, tn charge 
of the U.S. National Museum, 


263 


THE ORIGIN OF THE NATIONAL: SCIENTIFIC AND EDUCA- 
TIONAL INSTITUTIONS OF THE UNITED STATES.’ 


By GEORGE BRowN GOODE, 


Assistant Secretary, Smithsonian Institution, in charge of the U.S. National 
Museum. 


‘*Harly in the seventeenth century,’’ we are told, ‘‘the great Mr. Boyle, 
Bishop Wilkins, and several other learned men proposed to leave Eng- 
land and establish a society for promoting knowledge in the new colony 
[of Connecticut], of which Mr. Winthrop,’ their intimate friend and asso- 
ciate, was appointed governor.’’ 

‘*Such men,’’ wrote the historian, ‘‘were too valuable to lose from 
Great Britain, and Charles the Second having taken them under his pro- 
tection in 1661, the society was there established, and received the title 
of The Royal Society of London.’’ 

For more than a hundred years this society was for our country what 
it still is for the British colonies throughout the world—a central and 
national scientific organization. All Americans eminent in science were 
on its list of Fellows, among them Cotton Mather, the three Winthrops, 
Bowdoin, and Paul Dudley, in New England; Franklin, Rittenhouse, and 
Morgan, in Pennsylvania; Banister, Clayton, Mitchell, and Byrd, in Vir- 
ginia; and Garden and Williamson in the Carolinas, while in its Philo- 
sophical Transactions were published the only records of American 
research.‘ 


‘A paper presented before the American Historical Society at the meeting held in 
Washington in 1889, and revised and corrected by the author to July 15, 18go. 

2John Winthrop, F. R. S. [1606-1676], elected governor of Connecticut in 1657. 

3John Eliot, Biographical Dictionary of Eminent Characters in New England. 
Boston, 1809. 

4The first meetings of the body of men afterwards organized as the Royal Society 
appear to have taken place during the Revolution and in the time of Cromwell; and 
as early as 1645, we are told by Wallace, weekly meetings were held of ‘‘divers 
worthy persons inquisitive into natural philosophy and other parts of human learn- 
ing, and particularly of what has been called the new philosophy, or experimental 
philosophy,’’ and it is more than probable that this assembly of philosophers was 
identical with the Invisible College, of which Boyle spoke in sundry letters writ- 
ten in 1646 and 1647. These meetings continued to be held, sometimes at the Bull- 

265 


266 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


It was not until long after the middle of the last century that any scien- 
tific society was permanently established in North America, although 
serious but fruitless efforts were made in this direction as early as 1743, 
when Benjamin Franklin issued his circular entitled A proposal for pro- 
moting useful knowledge among the British plantations in America, in 
which it was urged ‘‘that a society should be formed of v727tuosz or ingeni- 
ous men residing in the several colonies, to be called The American Philo- 
sophical Society.”’ 

There is still in existence, in the possession of the Philosphical Society 
in Philadelphia, a most interesting letter from Franklin to Governor Cad- 
wallader Colden, of New York, in which he tells of the steps which had 
already been taken for the formation of a scientific society in Philadelphia, 
and of the means by which he hoped to make it of great importance to 
the colonies. 

Our forefathers were not yet prepared for the society, nor for the Amer- 
ican Philosophical Miscellany which Franklin’ proposed to issue, either 
monthly or quarterly. There is no reason to believe that the society ever 
did anything of importance. Franklin’s own attention was soon directed 
exclusively to his electrical researches, end his society languished and 
died. 

Some twenty years later, in 1766, a new organization was attempted 
under the title of The American Society held at Philadelphia for Pro- 
moting Useful Knowledge.* Franklin, although absent in England, 
was elected its president, and the association entered upon a very prom- 
ising career. 

In the meantime the few surviving members of the first American 
Philosophical Society formed, under the old name, an organization 
which in many particulars was so unlike that proposed in 1743 that it 
might almost be regarded as new rather than a revival. Its membership 
included many of the most influential and wealthy colonists, and the 
spirited manner in which it organized a plan for the observation of the 
transit of Venus in 1769 gave it at once a respectable standing at home 
and abroad. 

In 1769, after negotiations which occupied nearly a year, the two 
societies were united,* and The American Philosophical Society held at 
Philadelphia for Promoting Useful Knowledge has from that time until 


Head Tavern, in Cheapside, but more frequently at Gresham College, until 1660, 
when the first record book of this society was opened. Among the first entries is a 
reference to a design then entertained ‘of founding a college for the promoting of 
physico-mathematicall experimentall learning.’’ Doctor Wilkins was appointed 
chairman of the society, and shortly after, the King, Charles II, having become a 
member, its regular meeting place was appointed to be in Gresham College. 

‘This name was adopted in 1768 to replace that first adopted in 1766, which was 
The American Society for Promoting and Propagating Useful Knowledge, held in 
Philadelphia. 

* Some insight into the scientific politics of the time may be gained by reading the 
following extract from a letter addressed to Franklin by Doctor Thomas Bond, June 


Report of U. S. National Museum, 1897. Part Il. PLATE 50. 


National Scientific and Educational Institutions. 267 


now maintained an honorable position among the scientific organizations 
of the world. 

The society at once began the publication of a volume of memoirs, 
which appeared in 1771 under the name of The American Philosophical 
Transactions.’ 

From 1773 to 1779 its operations were often interrupted. In the min- 
utes of the meeting for December, 1774, appears the following remarkable 
note in the handwriting of Doctor Benjamin Rush, one of the secretaries, 
soon after to be one of the signers of the Declaration of Independence: 

The act of the British Parliament for shutting up the port of Boston, for altering 
the charters, and for the more impartial administration of justice in the Province 
of Massachusetts Bay, together with a bill for establishing Popery and arbitrary 
power in Quebec, having alarmed the whole of the American colony, the members 
of the American Philosophical Society, partaking with their countrymen in the 
distress and labors brought upon their country, were obliged to discontinue their 
meetings for some months until a mode of opposition to the said acts of Parliament 


was established, which we hope may restore the former harmony and maintain a 
perpetual union between Great Britain and the Americas. 


This entry is especially interesting because it emphasizes the fact that 
among the members of this infant scientific society were many of the 
men who were most active in the organization of the Republic, and who, 
under the stress of the times, abandoned the quiet pursuits of science 
and devoted themselves to the national interests which were just coming 
into being. 

Franklin was president from its organization until his death, in 1790. 
He was at the same time president of the Commonwealth of Pennsyl- 
vania and a member of the Constitutional Convention, and the eminence 
of its leader probably secured for the body greater prestige than would 
otherwise have been attainable. The society, in fact, soon assumed 
national importance, for, during the last decade of the century and for 


7,1769: I long meditated a revival of our American Philosophical Society, and at 
length thought I saw my way clear in doing it; but the old party leaven split us for 
a time. We are now united, and with your presence may make a figure; but till 
that happy event I fear much will not be done. The assembly have countenanced 
and encouraged us generously and kindly; and we are much obliged to you for your 
care in procuring the telescope which was used in the late observations of the transit 
of Venus. 

"A copy of the finished volume of the Transactions was presented to each member 
of the Pennsylvania assembly, accompanied by an address as follows: As the vari- 
ous societies which have of late years been instituted in Europe have confessedly 
contributed much to the more general propagation of knowledge and useful arts, it 
is hoped it will give satisfaction to the members of the honorable house to find that 
the province which they represent can boast of the first society and the first publi- 
cation of a volume of Transactions for the advancement of the useful knowledge of 
this side of the Atlantic—a volume which is wholly American in composition, print- 
ing, and paper, and which, we flatter ourselves, may not be thought altogether 
unworthy of the attention of men of letters in the most improved parts of the 
world. 


268 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


many years after, Philadelphia was the metropolis of American science 
and literature. 

Directly after the Revolution a similar institution was established in 
Boston, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, which was incor- 
porated by the legislature of Massachusetts in 1780, and published its 
first memoirs in 1785. This, like the Philadelphia society, owed its 
origin to the efforts of a great statesman. We find the whole history in 
the memoirs of John Adams, aman who believed, with Washington, that 
scientific institutions are the best and most lasting protection of a popular 
government. 

Ir a memorandum written in 1809 Mr. Adams gave his recollections 
of the circumstances which led to his deep and lasting interest in scien- 
tific foundations : 


In traveling from Boston to Philadelphia, in 1774—75-76-77, I had several times 
amused myself at Norwalk, in Connecticut, with the very curious collection of birds 
and insects of American production made by Mr. Arnold;* a collection which he 
afterwards sold to Governor ‘Tryon, who sold it to Sir Ashton Lever, in whose apart- 
ments in London I afterwards viewed it again. This collection was so singular a 
thing that it made a deep impression upon me, and I could not but consider it a 
reproach to my country that so little was known, even to herself, of her natural 
history. 

When I was in Europe, in the years 1778-79 in the commission to the King of 
France, with Doctor Franklin and Mr. Arthur Lee, I had opportunities to see the 
King’s collection and many others, which increased my wishes that nature might 
be examined and studied in my own country as it was in others. 

In France, among the academicians and other men of science and letters, I was 
frequently entertained with inquiries concerning the Philosophical Society of Phila- 
delphia, and with eulogiums on the wisdom of that institution, and encomiums on 
some publications in their transactions. These conversations suggested to me the 
idea of such an establishment in Boston, where I knew there was as much love of 
science, and as many gentlemen who were capable of pursuing it, as in any other 
city of its size. 

In 1779 I returned to Boston on the French frigate La Sensible, with the Chevalier 
de la Luzerne and M. Marbois.?- The corporation of Harvard College gave a public 
dinner in honor of the French ambassador and his suite, and did me the honor of an 
invitation to dine with them. At table in the Philosophy Chamber, I chanced to sit 
next to Doctor Cooper.3 I entertained him during the whole of the time we were 


‘Some local antiquary may make an interesting contribution to the literature of 
American museum work by looking up the history of this collection. 

? The Chevalier Anne César de la Luzerne [1741-1821] was French minister to the 
United States from 1779 to 1783, afterwards minister to England. M. Francois de 
Barbé Marbois [1745-1837] was his secretary of legation, and after the return of his 
chief to France, was chargé d’affaires until 1785. For many interesting facts, not 
elsewhere accessible, concerning the career of these men in the United States, and 
their acquaintance with Adams, see John Durand’s admirable New Materials for a 
History of the American Revolution. New York: Henry Holt & Co., 1889. I2mo, 
pp. i-vi, I-3I0. 

3 Rev. Samuel Cooper, D. D. [1725-1783], aneminent patriot, long pastor of Brattle 
Street Church, in Boston, and a leading member of the corporation of Harvard. He 
was the first vice-president of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. 

The first president of the academy was James Bowdoin, afterwards governor of 


National Scientific and Educational Institutions. 269 


together with an account of Arnold’s collections, the collection I had seen in Europe, 
the compliments I had heard in France upon the Philosophical Society of Phila- 
delphia, and concluded with proposing that the future legislature of Massachusetts 
should institute an Academy of Arts and Sciences. 

The doctor at first hesitated; thought it would be difficult to find members who 
would attend to it; but the principal objection was that it would injure Harvard 
College by setting up a rival to it that might draw the attention and affections of the 
public in some degree from it. ‘To this I answered, first, that there were certainly 
men of learning enough that might compose a society sufficiently numerous; and 
secondly, that instead of being a rival to the university it would be an honor and an 
advantage to it. ‘That the president and principal professors would, no doubt, be 
always members of it; and the meetings might be ordered, wholly or in part, at the 
college and in that room. The doctor at length appeared better satisfied, and I 
entreated him to propagate the idea and the plan as far and as soon as his discretion 
would justify. The doctor did accordingly diffuse the project so judiciously and 
effectually that the first legislature under the new constitution adopted and estab- 
lished it by law. Afterwards, when attending the convention for forming the con- 
stitution, I mentioned the subject to several of the members, and when I was 
appointed by the subcommittee to make a draft of a project of a constitution to be 
laid before the convention, my mind and heart was so full of this subject that I 
inserted the provision for the encouragement of literature in chapter 5, section 2. 
I was somewhat apprehensive that criticism and objections would be made to the 
section, and particularly that the ‘‘natural history’? and the ‘‘good humor’’ would 
be stricken out; but the whole was received. very kindly, and passed the convention 
unanimously, without amendment." 


” 


Massachusetts, and the friend of Washington and Franklin, and a member of the 
Royal Society. He held the presidency from 1780 until his death in 1790. His 
descendant, the Hon. Robert C. Winthrop, was chosen to deliver the oration at the 
centennial anniversary of the organization of the society. 

*The provision in the State constitution of which Mr. Adams speaks, was the 
following: 

The encouragement of literature, etc. Wisdom and knowledge, as well as virtue 
diffused generally among the body of the people, being necessary for the preservation 
of their rights and liberties, and as these depend on spreading the opportunities and 
advantages of education in the various parts of the country, and among the different 
orders of the people, it shall be the duty of legislators and magistrates in all future 
periods of the Commonwealth, to cherish the interests of literature and the sciences, 
and all seminaries of them, especially the university at Cambridge, public schools, 
and grammar schools in the towns, to encourage private societies and public insti- 
tutions, rewards and immunities for the promotion of agriculture, arts, sciences, 
commerce, trades, manufactures, anda natural history of the country; tocountenance 
and inculcate the principles of humanity and general benevolence, public and private 
charity, industry and frugality, honesty and punctuality in their dealings, sincerity, 
good humor, and all social affections and generous sentiments among the people. 

This feature of the constitution of Massachusetts, [writes Mr. Adams’s biog- 
rapher,] is peculiar, and in one sense original with Mr. Adams. ‘The recognition 
of the obligation of a State to promote a higher and more extended policy than is 
embraced in the protection of the temporal interests and political rights of the indi- 
vidual, however understood among enlightened minds, had not at that time been 
formally made a part of the organic law. ‘Those clauses since inserted in other State 
constitutions, which, with more or less of fullness, acknowledged the same principle, 
are all manifestly taken from this source. 


270 Memorval of George Brown Goode. 


The two societies are still institutions of national importance, not only 
because of a time-honored record and useful work, but on account of 
important general trusts under their control. Although all their meet- 
ings are held in the cities where they were founded, their membership is 
not localized, and to be a Member of the American Philosophical Society 
or a Fellow of the American Academy, is an honor highly appreciated 
by every American scientific man. 

The Philosophical Society (founded before the separation of the colo- 
nies) copied the Royal Society of Great Britain in its corporate name, as 
well as in that of its transactions, and in its ideals and methods of work 
took it for a model. 

The American Academy, on the other hand, had its origin ‘‘at a time 
when Britain was regarded as an inveterate enemy and France as a gen- 
erous patron,’’* and its founders have placed upon record the statement 
that it was their intention ‘‘to give it the air of France rather than that 
of England, and to follow the Royal Academy rather than the Royal 
Society.’’* And so in Boston the academy published Memoirs, while 
conservative Philadelphia continued to issue Philosophical Transactions. 

In time, however, the prejudice against the motherland became less 
intense, and the academy in Boston followed the general tendency of 
American scientific workers, which has always been more closely parallel 
with that of England than that of continental Europe, contrasting 
strongly with the disposition of modern educational administrators to 
build after German models. 

It would have been strange indeed if the deep-seated sympathy with 
France which our forefathers cherished had not led to still other attempts 
to establish organizations after the model of the French Academy of 
Sciences. The most ambitious of these was in connection with the 
Academy of Arts and Sciences of the United States of America, whose 
central seat was to have been in Richmond, Virginia, and whose plan 
was brought to America in 1788 by the Chevalier Quesnay de Beaure- 
paire. This project, we are told, had been submitted to the King of France 
and to the Royal Academy of Science, and had received an unqualified 
indorsement signed by many eminent men, among others by Lavoisier 
and Condorcet, as well as a similar paper from the Royal Academy of 
Paintings and Sculpture signed by Vernet and others. A large sum was 
subscribed by the wealthy planters of Virginia and by the citizens of 
Richmond, a building was erected, and one professor, Doctor Jean 
Rouelle, was appointed, who was also commissioned mineralogist in 
chief and instructed to make natural-history collections in America and 
Europe. 

The population of Virginia, it proved, was far too scattered and rural 
to give any chance of success for a project which in its nature was only 


"Letter of Manasseh Cutler to Doctor Jonathan Stokes, August 17, 1785. 
2 Idem. 


Report of U. S. National Museum, 1897. Part Il. PLATE 51. 


BENJAMIN HENRY LATROBE. 


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National Scientific and Educational Institutions. Ag 


practicable in a commercial and intellectual metropolis, and the academy 
died almost before it was born. 

‘‘Quesnay’s scheme was not altogether chimerical,’’ writes H. B. 
Adams, ‘“‘but in the year 1788 France was in no position, financial or 
social, to push her educational system in Virginia. "The year Quesnay’s 
suggestive little tract was published was the year before the French 
Revolution, in which political maelstrom everything in France went 
down. . .. If circumstances had favored it, the Academy of the United 
States of America, established at Richmond, would have become the cen- 
ter of higher education not only for Virginia, but for the whole South, 
and possibly for a large part of the North, if the academy had been 
extended, as proposed, to the cities of Baltimore, Philadelphia, and New 
York. Supported by French capital, to which in large measure we owe 
the success of our Revolutionary war, strengthened by French prestige, 
by liberal scientific and artistic associations with Paris, then the intel- 
lectual capital of the world, the academy at Richmond might have 
become an educational stronghold, comparable in some degree to the 
Jesuit influence in Canada, which has proved more lasting than French 
dominion, more impregnable than the fortress of Quebec.’’ * 

A scientific society was organized at Williamsburg during the Revolu- 
tion, but in those trying times it failed for lack of attention on the part 
of its founders. 


"Copies of Quesnay’s pamphlet are preserved in the Virginia State library at 
Richmond and in the Andrew D. White Historical library of Cornell University, 
as well as in a certain private library in Baltimore. A full account of this enterprise 
may be found in Herbert B. Adams’s Thomas Jefferson and the University of Vir- 
ginia, pp. 21-30, and other records occur in Mordecai’s Richmond in By-gone Days 
(2d edition, pp. 198-208) and in Goode’s Virginia Cousins, p. 57. 

The building erected for the Academy of Sciences was the meeting place of the 
convention of patriots and statesmen who ratified in 1788 the Constitution of the 
United States, and subsequently was the principal theater of the city of Richmond. 

The academy grounds, [writes R. A. Brock,] included the square bounded by 
Broad and Marshall and Eleventh and Twelfth streets, on the lower portion of which 
stood the Monumental Church and the medical college. ‘The academy stood mid- 
way in the square fronting Broad street. I, Académie des Etats-Unis de 1’ Amérique 
was an attempt, growing out of the French alliance with the United States, to plant 
in Richmond a kind of French academy of the arts and sciences, with branch acad- 
emies in Baltimore, Philadelphia, and New York. ‘The institution was to be at once 
national and international. It was to be affiliated with the royal societies of Lon- 
don, Paris, Brussels, and other learned bodies in Europe. It was to be composed of 
a president, vice-president, six counsellors, a treasurer-general, a secretary, and a 
recorder, an agent for taking European subscriptions, French professors, masters, 
artists in chief attached to the academy, 25 resident and 175 nonresident associates, 
selected from the best talent of the Old World and the New. ‘The academy proposed 
to publish yearly, from its own press in Paris, an almanac. The academy was to 
show its zeal for science by communicating to France and other European countries 
a knowledge of the natural products of North America. ‘The museums and cabinets 
of the Old World were to be enriched by the specimens of the flora and fauna of a 


272 Memortal of George Brown Goode. 


Our forefathers in colonial times had their national universities beyond 
the sea, and all of the young colonists, who were able to do so, went to 
Oxford or Cambridge for theirclassical degrees, and to Edinburgh and Lon- 
don for training in medicine, for admission to the bar, or for clerical 
orders. Local colleges seemed as unnecessary as did local scientific 
societies. 

Many attempts were made to establish local societies before final results 
were accomplished, and the beginnings of the national college system had 
a similar history. 

In 1619 the Virginia Company of England made a grant of 10,000 
acres of land for ‘‘the foundation of a seminary of learning for the Eng- 
lish in Virginia,’’ and in the same year the bishops of England, at the 
suggestion of the King, raised the sum of 41,500 for the encouragement 
of Indian education in connection with the same foundation. A begin- 
ning was made toward the occupation of the land, and George Thorpe, a 
man of high standing in England, came out to be superintendent of the 
university, but he and 340 other colonists (including all the tenants of 
the university ) were destroyed by the Indians in the massacre of 1622. 

The story of this undertaking is told by Professor H. B. Adams in the 
History of the College of William and Mary, in which also is given an 
account of the Academia Virginiensis et Oxoniensis, which was to have 
been founded on an island in the Susquehanna River, granted in 1624 
for the founding and maintenance of a university, but was suspended on 


country as yet undiscovered by men of science. The promoter of this brilliant 
scheme was the Chevalier Alexander Maria Quesnay de Beaurepaire, grandson of the 
famous French philosopher and economist, Doctor Quesnay, who was the court 
physician of Louis XV. Chevalier Quesnay had served as a captain in Virginia, in 
1777-78, in the war of the Revolution. The idea of founding the academy was sug- 
gested to him in 1778 by John Page, of Rosewell, then lieutenant governor of 
Virginia, and himself devoted to scientific investigation. Quesnay succeeded in 
raising by subscription the sum of 60,000 francs, the subscribers in Virginia embracing 
nearly 100 prominent names. The corner stone of the building, which was of wood, 
was laid with Masonic ceremonies July 8, 1756. Having founded and organized this 
academy under the most distinguished auspices, Quesnay returned to Paris and suc- 
ceeded in enlisting in support of his plan many learned and distinguished men of 
France and England. ‘The French revolution, however, put an end to the scheme. 
The academy building was early converted into a theater, which was destroyed by 
fire, but a new theater was erected in the rear of the old. This new building was 
also destroyed by fire on the night of December 26, 1811, when 72 persons perished 
in the flames. The Monumental church commemorates the disaster, and its portico 
covers the tomb and ashes of most of its victims. A valuable sketch of Quesnay’s 
enlightened projection, chiefly drawn from his curious Mémoire concernant 1’ Aca- 
démie des Sciences et Beaux-Arts des Etats-Unis d’Amérique, établie 4 Richmond, 
was published in The Academy, December, 1887, II, No. 9, pp. 403, 412, by Doctor 
Herbert B. Adams, of Johns Hopkins University. A copy of Quesnay’s rare 
Mémoire is in the library of the State of Virginia. Quesnay complains bitterly 
that all his letters relating to his service in the American Army had been stolen from 
a pigeonhole in Governor Henry’s desk and his promotion thus prevented. 


National Scientific and Educational Institutions. 273 


account of the death of its projector, and of King James I, and the fall 
of the Virginia Company. 

Soon after, in 1636, came the foundation of Harvard, then in 1660 
William and Mary, Yale in 1701, the College of New Jersey in 1746, the 
University of Pennsylvania in 1751, Columbia in 1754, Brown in 1764, 
Dartmouth in 1769, the University of Maryland in 1784, that of North 
Carolina in 1789-1795, that of Vermont in 1791, and Bowdoin (the col- 
lege of Maine) in 1794. 

When Washington became President, one hundred years ago, there 
were no scientific foundations within this Republic save the American 
Academy in Boston; and, in the American Philosophical Society, Bar- 
tram’s Botanic Garden, the private observatory of Rittenhouse, and 
Peale’s Natural History Museum, Philadelphia. 

Washington’s own inclinations were all favorable to the progress of 
science; and Franklin, who would have been Vice-President but tor his 
age and weakness, Adams, the Vice-President, and Jefferson, Secretary 
of State, were all in thorough sympathy with the desire of their chief to 
‘promote as objects of primary importance institutions for the general 
diffusion of knowledge.’’ All of them were fellows of the American 
Philosophical Society, and the President took much interest in its pro- 
ceedings. The records of the society show that he nominated for foreign 
membership the Earl of Buchan, president of the Society of Scottish 
Antiquaries, and Doctor James Anderson. 

Washington’s mind was scientific in its tendencies, and his letters to 
the English agriculturists (Young, Sinclair, and Anderson) show him 
to have been aclose student of physical geography and climatology. He 
sent out with his own hand, while President, a circular letter to the best 
informed farmers in New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Maryland, 
and Virginia, and having received a considerable number of answers, pre- 
pared a report on the resources of the Middle Atlantic States, which was 
the first of the kind written in America, and was a worthy beginning of 
the great library of agricultural science which has since emanated from 
our Government press. 

In a letter to Arthur Young, dated December 5, 1791, he manifested 
great interest in the Hessian fly, an insect making frightful ravages in 
the wheat fields of the Middle States, and so much dreaded in Great 
Britain that the importation of wheat from America was prohibited.* It 
was very possibly by his request that a committee of the Philosophical 
Society prepared and printed an elaborate and exhaustive report, and 
since its chairman was Washington’s Secretary of State, it was practically 


‘In an article recently published by Professor C. V. Riley, he sustains the popular 
belief and tradition that Cectzdomya was introduced about the time of the Revolution, 
and probably by Hessian troops. He gives interesting details concerning the work 
of the committee of the American Philosophical Society, and a review of recent 
controversies upon this subject. See Canadian Entomologist, XX, p. 121. 


ISpeNaty QUIS, to)7/5 3 es 18 


274 Memortal of George Brown Goode. 


a governmental affair, the precursor of subsequent entomological com- 
missions, and of our Department of Economic Entomology.’ 

The interest of Washington in the founding of a national university, 
as manifested in the provisions of his last will and testament, are familiar 
to all, and I have been interested to learn that his thoughts were earnestly 
fixed upon this great project during all the years of the Revolutionary 
war. It is an inspiring thought that, during the long and doubtful strug- 
gle for independence, the leader of the American arms was looking forward 
to the return of peace, in anticipation of an opportunity to found in a 
central part of the rising empire an institution for the completing of the 
education of youths from all parts thereof, where they might at the same 
time be enabled to free themselves in a proper degree from local preju- 
dices and jealousies. 

Samuel Blodget, in his Economica, relates the history of the beginning 
of a national university. 

As the most minute circumstances are sometimes interesting for their relation to 
great events [he wrote], we relate the first we ever heard of a national university: 
it was in the camp at Cambridge, in October-1775, when major William Blodget 
went to the quarters of general Washington, to complain of the ruinous state of the 
colleges, from the conduct of the militia quartered therein. The writer of this being 
in company with his friend and relation, and hearing general Greene join in lament- 
ing the then ruinous state of the eldest seminary of Massachusetts, observed, merely 
to console the company of friends, that to make amends for these injuries, after our 
war, he hoped, we should erect a noble national university, at which the youth of all 
the world might be proud to receive instruction. What was thus pleasantly said, 
Washington immediately replied to, with that inimitably expressive and truly 
interesting look for which he was sometimes so remarkable: ‘‘ Young man you are a 
prophet! inspired to speak what I feel confident will one day be realized.’ We then 
detailed to the company his impressions, that all North America would one day become 
united; he said, that a colonel Byrd,? of Virginia, he believed, was the first man who 
had pointed out the best central seat [for the capital city], wear to the present spot, 
or about the falls of the Potomack. General Washington further said, that a Mr. 
Evans3 had expressed the same opinion, with many other gentlemen, who from a 


"Before the organization of the Department of Agriculture, another step in eco- 
nomic entomology was taken by the General Government in the publication of an 
official document on silk worms: 

1828. | Mease, James. | 20th Congress, | 18th Session | [Doc. No. 226] Ho. of 
Reps. | Silk-worms. | | Letter | from | James Mease, | transmitting a treatise 
on the rearing of silk-worms, | by Mr. De Hozze, of Munich, | with plates, etc., ete. 

| | February 2, 1828.—Read and referred to the Committee on Agriculture. 
| | Washington: | Printed by Gales and Seaton | 1828. | 8°. pp. 1-108. 

? Probably the third William Byrd [1728-1777], the son of the author of Westover 
Papers. He was colonel of the Second Virginia Regiment in 1756, and perhaps was 
in camp with Washington on the present site of the capital, when he became so deeply 
impressed with the eligibility. of the site for a national city. 

3Perhaps Lewis Evans, the geographer, who in 1749 published a map of the central 
colonies, including Virginia. Professor Winsor tells me that there are copies of this 
map in the possession of Harvard University, in the library of the Pennsylvania 
Historical Society, and one in the Faden collection in the Library of Congress. 
Professor Josiah D, Whitney says that the legend on it, ‘‘ All great storms begin to 
leeward,”’ is, so far as he knows, the first expression of that scientific opinion. 


EE 


Report of U. S. National Museum, 1897. Part Il. PLATE 52. 


National Scientific and Educational Institutions. 275 


cursory view of a chart of North America, received this natural and truly correct 
impression. ‘The look of general Washington, the energy of his mind, his noble 
and irresistible eloquence, all conspired, so far to impress ¢he writer with these sub- 
jects, that if ever he should unfortunately become insane, it w7// be from his anxiety 
for the federal city and NATIONAL, UNIVERSITY." 4 

In another part of the same book Mr. Blodget describes a conversation 
with Washington, which took place after the site of the capital had been 
decided upon, in which the President ‘‘ stated his opinion, that there were 
four or five thousand inhabitants in the city of Washington, and until 
congress were comfortably accommodated, it might be premature to com- 
mence a seminary. * * * He did not wish to see the work commenced 
until the city was prepared for it; but he added, that he hoped he had 
not omitted to take such measures as would at all events secure the entire 
object in time, even if its merits should not draw forth from every quarter 
the aid it would be found to deserve,’’ alluding, of course, to the provi- 
sions in his own will. ‘‘He then,’’ continues Blodget, ‘‘talked again 
and again, on Mr. Turgot’s and Doctor Price’s-calculations of the effect 
of compound interest, at which, ashe was well versed in figures, he 
could acquit himself ina masterly manner.’’* 

Concerning the fate of the Potomac Company, a portion of whose stock 
was destined by Washington as a nucleus for the endowment of a univer- 
sity, itis not necessary now to speak. The value of the bequest was at the 
time placed at £5,000 sterling, and it was computed by Blodget that had 
Congress kept faith with Washington, as well as did the legislature of 
Virginia in regard to the endowment of Washington College, his dona- 
tion at compound interest would in twelve years (1815) have grown to 
$50,000, and in twenty-four years (1827) to $100,000, an endowment 
sufficient to establish one of the colleges in the proposed university. 

Madison, when a member of the Constitutional Convention in 1787, 
probably acting in harmony with the wishes of Washington, proposed 
as among the powers proper to be added to those of the Les Legis- 
lature, the following: 

To establish a university. 


To encourage, by premiums and provisions, the advancement of useful knowl- 
edge and the discussion of science.3 


That he never lost his interest in the university idea is shown by his 
vigorous appeal while President, in his message of December, 1810, in 
which he urged the importance of an institution at the capital which 
would “‘contribute not less to strengthen the foundations than to adorn 
the structure of our system of government.’’ 

Quite in accord with the spirit of Madison’s message was a letter in 
the Pennsylvania Gazette of 1788,‘ in which it was argued that the new 
form of government proposed by the framers of the Constitution could 
not succeed in a republic, unless the people were prepared for it by an 


* Economica, p. 22. 3 Madison Papers, I, pp. 354, 577. 
?Idem,, Appendix, p. ix. 4See Appendix A. 


276 Memortal of George Brown Goode. 


education adapted to the new and peculiar situation of the country, the 
most essential instrument for which should be a Federal university. 
Indeed, the tone of this article, to which my attention has recently been 
directed by President Welling, was so harmonious with that of the pre- 
vious and subsequent utterances of Madison as to suggest the idea that 
he, at that time a resident of Philadelphia, may have been its author. 
It is more probable, however, that the writer was Benjamin Rush, who 
in 1787 issued an Address to the people of the United States,’ which 
began with the remark that there is nothing more common than to con- 
found the terms of American Revolution with those of the late Ameri- 
can war. 

‘“The American war is over,’’ he said, ‘‘but this is far from being the 
case with the American Revolution. On the contrary, nothing but the 
first act of the great drama is closed. It remains yet to establish and 
perfect our new forms of government, and to prepare the principles, 
morals, and manners of our citizens for these forms of government after 
they are established and brought to perfection.’ 

And then he went on to propose a plan for a national university, of 
the broadest scope, with post-graduate scholarships, a corps of traveling 
correspondents, or fellows, in connection with the consular service, and 
an educated civil service, organized in connection with the university 
work. 

In EKceonomica, the work just quoted, printed in 1806, the first work 
on political economy written in America, Blodget referred to the national 
university project as an accepted idea, held in temporary abeyance by 
legislative delays. 

Blodget urged upon Congress various projects which he thought to 
be of national importance, and among the first of these was To erect, 
or at least to point out, the place for the statue of 1783, and either to 
direct or permit the colleges of the university formed by Washington 
to commence around this statue after the manner of the Timoleonteon 
of Syracuse. 


*See Appendix B. 

* The Society of Sons of the American Revolution, recently organized, and com- 
posed of descendants of Revolutionary soldiers and patriots, has for one of its 
objects ‘‘to carry out Washington’s injunction ‘to promote as objects of primary 
importance institutions for the diffusion of knowledge,’ and thus to create an 
enlightened public opinion.”’ 

31806 Blodget, Samuel, jr., Economica: | A Statistical Manual | for the | United 


SteLes sor Aimeriea. | =="... See The legislature ought to make the people 
happy | Aristotle on government | =] .......... ‘* Felix qui potuit rerum cognos- 
cere causas’’ | — | City of Washington: | Printed for the author. | = | 1806, 128 


i-vili, I—-202 i—xiv. 

The certificate of copyright is in this form: 

Be it remembered that * Samuel Blodget, junior, hath deposited in this 
office, the title of a book the right whereof he claims as author, but for the benefit in 
trust for the free education fund of the university founded by George Washington 
in his last will, ete. 


National Scientific and Educational Institutions. 277 


In intimate connection with his plan for a university was that of 
Washington for a military academy at West Point. He had found dur- 
ing the Revolution a great want of engineers, and this want caused 
Congress to accept the services of numerous French engineers to aid our 
country in its struggle for independence. 

At the close of the Revolution, Washington lost no time in commend- 
ing to Virginia the improvement of the Potomac and James rivers, the 
junction by canal of Chesapeake Bay and Albemarle Sound of North 
Carolina. He soon after proceeded to New York to see the plans of 
General Schuyler to unite the Mohawk with the waters of Lake Ontario, 
and to Massachusetts to see the plans of the Merrimac Navigation 
Company. 

It was the want of educated engineers for work of this kind that 
induced Generals Washington, Lee, and Huntington and Colonel Pick- 
ering, in the year 1783, to select West Point as a suitable site for a mili- 
tary academy, and at that place such an institution was essayed, under 
the law of Congress, in 1794. But from the destruction of the build- 
ing and its contained books and apparatus by fire, the academy was sus- 
pended until the year 1801, when Mr. Jefferson renewed the action of 
the law, and the following year, 1802, a United States Corps of Engi- 
neers and Military Academy was organized by law and established at 
West Point, with General Jonathan Williams, the nephew of Franklin 
and one of the vice-presidents of the Philosophical Society, at its head, 
and the United States Military Philosophical Society was established 
with the whole Engineer Corps of the Army for a nucleus. 

This society had for its object ‘‘the collecting and disseminating of 
military science.’’ Its membership during the ten years of its existence 
included most of the leading men in the country, civilians as well as 
officers in the Army and Navy. Meetings were held in New York and 
Washington, as well as in West Point, and it seems to have been the 
first national scientific society." 

The Patent Office also began under Washington, the first American 
patent system having been founded by act of Congress April 10, 1790. 

On the 8th of January, 1790, President Washington entered the Sen- 
ate Chamber, where both Houses of Congress were assembled, and 
addressed them on the state of the new nation. In the speech of a few 
minutes, which thus constituted the first annual message to Congress, 


*At least three fascicles of Extracts from the minutes of the United States Mili- 
tary Society were printed—one for the stated meeting, October 6, 1806 [4°, 14 pp.]; 
one for an occasional meeting at Washington, January 30, 1808 [4°, pp. 1-23 (1)]; 
and one for an occasional meeting at New York, December 28, 1809 [4°, pp. I-22]. 
The manuscript records, in four volumes, are said to be in the possession of the 
New York Historical Society. 

I am indebted to Colonel John M. Wilson, United States Army, Superintendent of 
the Military Academy, and to General J. C. Kelton, United States Army, for court- 
eous and valuable replies to my letters of inquiry. 


278 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


about a third of the space was given to the promotion of intellectual 
objects—science, literature, and arts. The following expression may 
perhaps be regarded as the practical origination of our patent system: 

I can not forbear intimating to you the expediency of giving effectual encourage- 


ment, as well to the introduction of new and useful inventions from abroad, as to 
the exertions of skill and genius in producing them at home. 


This, of course, was in direct pursuance of the constitutional enact-* 


ment, bethought and inserted toward the closing days of the convention 
in September, 1787, empowering Congress with such authority. Each 
House, the Senate on the rith and the Representatives on the 12th, sent 
a cordial response to the President’s address, reciting the particulars of 
his discourse, and promising, especially to his suggestions for encourage- 


ment of science and arts, ‘‘such early attention as their respective © 


importance requires-’? and the lower House proceeded rapidly with the 
work. January 15 it was resolved that the various measures indicated 
by the President should be referred to select committees, respectively, 
and on the 25th such a committee was formed to consider the encourage- 
ment of the useful arts. It consisted of Edanus Burke, of South Carolina, 
a justice of the supreme court of that State, and native of Ireland; Ben- 
jamin Huntington, of Connecticut, and Lambert Cadawalader, of New 
Jersey. On the 16th of February Mr. Burke reported his bill, which 
passed to its second reading the following day. It was copiously discussed 
and amended in Committee of the Whole, particularly March 4, when 
‘‘the clause which gives a party a right to appeal toa jury from a decision 
of referees, it was moved should be struck out.’? After a good deal of 
pointed and profitable remark as to the true sphere and function of juries 
the motion for striking out was carried. 

The next day, March 5, the bill was ordered to be engrossed, and on 
the roth, after third reading, it passed and was carried to the Senate. 
Here, in a few days, it was referred to a committee of which Charles 
Carroll, of Maryland, was chairman, and reported back the 29th of 
March, where it passed, with twelve amendments, on the 30th. On 
the 8th of April it went forward with the signatures of Speaker and Vice- 
President to the President, who approved it April 10, 1790.7 The first 
patent was granted on the 31st of the following July to Samuel Hopkins, 
of Vermont, for making pot and pearl ashes; and two more during that 
year.* 

Thomas Jefferson, Secretary of State at this period, under which 
Department especially the patent system grew up for more than half its 
first century, took so keen an interest in its aim and workings, and gave 
such searching personal attention to the issue of the several patents, that 
he has been quite naturally reputed as the father of our Patent Office, and 


‘Statutes at Large, I, pp. 1og-r12. 
? Among the treasures of the National Museum is a patent dated 1796, signed by 
Washington as President and Pickering as Secretary of State. 


Report of U. S. National Museum, 1897. Part Il. PLATE 53. 


MERIWETHER LEWIS. 


National Screntific and Educational Institutions. 279 


it seems to have been supposed that the bill itself creating it proceeded 
from his own suggestion. But by a comparison of dates this appears 
hardly possible. Jefferson returned from Europe to Norfolk and Monti- 
cello toward the end of 1789, his mind deeply occupied with the stirring 
movements-of revolution abroad. During the winter months he was 
debating whether he should accept the charge of the State Department, 
offered him by Washington; making his way by slow stages from Vir- 
ginia to New York; receiving innumerable ovations; paying his last visit 
to the dying Franklin, and he only reached the seat of government 
March 21, when the legislative work on this act was practically finished. 
More than to any other individual, probably, the American patent system 
looks for its origin to the Father of the Country." 

Jefferson took great pride in it, and gave personal consideration to 
every application that was made for patents during the years between 1790 
and 1793, while the power of revision and rejection granted by that act 
remained in force. It is a matter of tradition, handed down to us from 
generation to generation, that when an application for a patent was 
made he would summon Mr. Henry Knox, of Massachusetts, who was 
Secretary of War, and Mr. Edmund Randolph, of Virginia, who was 
Attorney-General, these officials being designated by the act, with the 
Secretary of State, a tribunal to examine and grant patents; and that 
these three distinguished officials would examine the application critic- 
ally, scrutinizing each point of the specification and claims carefully and 
vigorously. The result of this examination was that, during the first 
year, a majority of the applications failed to pass the ordeal, and only three 
patents were granted. Every step in the issuing of a patent was taken 
with great care and caution, Mr. Jefferson thinking always to impress 
upon the minds of his officers and the public that it was a matter of no 
ordinary importance. 

The subsequent history of the office is very interesting, especially 
since it contains a record of Mr. Jefferson’s vigorous opposition to the 
change effected by the act of 1793, which, he held, by a promiscuous 
granting of exclusive privileges would lead to the creation of monopoly 
in the arts and industries, and was against the theory of a popular gov- 
ernment, and would be pernicious in its effects. 

In 1812 a building was put up for the accommodation of the office, 
but this was destroyed in 1836, and with it most of the records which 
would be necessary for a proper understanding of the early history of 
American invention. 

In the Patent Office building, and with it destroyed, there was gath- 
ered a collection of models, which was sometimes by courtesy called the 
American Museum of Art, and which afforded a precedent for the 

larger collection of models and natural products, which remained under 


* The foregoing paragraphs concerning the history of the Patent Office were kindly 
supplied by Mr. Edward Farquhar, for many years its assistant librarian. 


280 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


the custody of the Commissioner of Patents until 1858, when it was 
transferred to the Smithsonian Institution, and became a part of the 
present National Museum. 

In 1836 the patent system was reorganized, and most of the methods 
at present in use were put in operation. As it now stands, it is one of 
the most perfect and effective in the world, and the Patent Office, judged 
by the character of the work it performs, although, perhaps, not strictly 
to be classed among the scientific institutions, is nevertheless entitled 
to such a place by reason of its large and admirable corps of trained 
scientific experts serving on the staff of examiners.’ 

The Administration of John Adams, beginning in 1797, was short and 
turbulent. Political strife prevented him from making any impression 
upon our scientific history; but it requires no research to discern the 
attitude of the man who founded the American Academy and who drew 
up the articles for the encouragement of literature and science in the 
constitution of Massachusetts. 

Jefferson, as Vice-President, taking little part in the affairs of the 
Administration, was at liberty to cultivate the sciences. When he came 
to Philadelphia to be inaugurated Vice-President, he brought with him 
a collection of the fossilized bones of some large quadruped, and the 
manuscript of a memoir upon them, which he read before the American 
Philosophical Society, of which he had been elected president the pre- 
ceding year. 

‘“The spectacle of an American statesman coming to take part asa 
central figure in the greatest political ceremony of our country and 
bringing with him an original contribution to science is certainly,’’ as 
Luther has said, ‘‘ one we shall not soon see repeated.’’ ” 

In 1801 began the Administration most memorable in the history of 
American science. ‘The President of the United States was, during the 
eight years of his office, president of the American Philosophical Society 
as well, and was in touch with all the intellectual activities of the period. 
He wrote to a correspondent, ‘‘ Nature intended me for the tranquil 
pursuits of science by rendering them my supreme delight;’’ and to 
another he said, ‘‘ Your first letter gives me information in the line of 
natural history, and the second promises political news; the first is my 
passion, the last is my duty, and therefore both desirable.’’ 

‘““At times of the fiercest party conflict,’’ says Luther, ‘‘when less 
happily constituted minds would scarcely have been able to attend to 


"See Official Gazette, United States Patent Office, XII, No. 15, Tuesday, October 
9, 1877; also articles in Appleton’s and Johnson’s Cyclopeedias. 

The history of the Patent Office has never been written; a full account of its 
work and of its influence upon the progress of American invention is greatly to be 
desired. 

* See Jefferson, A Memoir on the Discovery of Certain Bones of a Quadruped, of 
the Clawed kind, in the Western Part of Virginia, in the American Philosophical 
Transactions, IV, p. 246 (March 10, 1797); also F. B. Luther, Jefferson as a Natu- 
ralist, in the Magazine of American History, April, 1885, pp. 379-390. 


National Screntific and Educational Institutions. 251 


the routine duties of life, we find him yielding to that subtle native 
force which all through life was constantly drawing him away from 
politics to science.’’ 

Thus, during these exciting weeks in February, 1801, when Congress 
was vainly trying to untangle the difficulties arising from the tie vote 
between Jefferson and Burr, when every politician at the capital was 
busy with schemes and counterschemes, this man, whose political fate 
was balanced on a razor’s edge, was corresponding with Doctor Wistar 
in regard to some bones of the mammoth which he had just procured 
from Shawangunk, in New York. Again, in 1808, when the excitement 
over the Embargo was highest, and when every day brought fresh 
denunciations of him and his policy, he was carrying on his geological 
studies in the White House itself. Under his direction upward of 300 
specimens of fossil bones had been brought from the famous Big Bone 
Lick and spread in one of the large unfinished rooms of the Presidential 
Mansion. Doctor Wistar was asked to come to Philadelphia and select 
such as were needed to complete the collection of the Philosophical 
Society. The exploration of the lick was made at the private expense 
of Jefferson through the agency of General William Clarke, the western 
explorer, and this may fairly be regarded as the beginning of American 
governmental work in paleontology. 

His scientific tendencies led to much criticism, of which the well- 
known lines by William Cullen Bryant, in The Embargo, afford a 
very mild example.* He cast all calumny aside with the remark ‘‘ that 
he who had nothing to conceal from the press had nothing to fear from 
it,’? and calmly went on his way. ‘The senior members of his Cabinet 
were James Madison, a man of the most enlightened sympathy with sci- 
ence, and Gallatin, one of the earliest American philologists ; while one of 
his strongest supporters in Congress was Samuel Latham Mitchill, a 
mighty promoter of scientific interests in his native State, whom Adams 
wittily describes as ‘“‘chemist, botanist, naturalist, physician, and poli- 
tician, who supported the Republican party because Jefferson was its 
leader, and Jefferson because he was a philosopher.’’ 

During this administration the project for a great national institution 
of learning was revived by Joel Barlow. In 1800, when Barlow was the 
American minister in Paris, he said in a letter to Senator Baldwin : 

I have been writing a long letter to Jefferson on quite another subject. . . . Itis 
about learned societies, universities, public instruction, and the advantages you now 


have for doing something great and good if you will take it up on proper principles. 
If you will put me at the head of the Institution there proposed, and give it that 


1 Go, wretch, resign the Presidential chair; 
Disclose thy secret measures, foul or fair. 
Go, search with curious eyes for hornéd frogs 
’Mid the wild wastes of Louisianian bogs, 
Or where the Ohio rolls his turbid stream 
Dig for huge bones, thy glory and thy theme. 


282 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


support which you ought to do, you can’t imagine what a garden it would make of the 
United States: I have great projects, and only want the time and means for carrying 
them into effect.* 

M. Dupont de Nemours was also corresponding with Jefferson upon 
the same subject, and his work, Sur V Education Nationale dans les 
Etats-Unis, published in Paris in 1800, was written at his request.” 

Barlow returned to the American States in 1805, and almost his first 
public act after his arrival, we are told, was to issue a prospectus in which 
he forcibly and eloquently depicted the necessity and advantages of a 
national scientific institution. 

This was to consist of a central university at or near the seat of gov- 
ernment, and, as far as might seem practicable or advisable, other uni- 
versities, colleges, and schools of education, either in Washington or in 
other parts of the United States, together with printing presses for the 
use of the institution, laboratories, libraries, and apparatus for the sci- 
ences and the arts, and gardens for botany and agricultural experiments. 

The institution was to encourage science by all means in its power, by 
correspondence, by premiums and by scholarships, and to publish school- 
books at cost of printing. 

The Military and Naval Academies, the Mint, and the Patent Office 
were to be connected with the university, and there was also to be a gen- 
eral depository of the results of scientific research and of the discoveries 
by voyages and travels, actually the equivalent of a national museum. 

‘In short,’’ wrote Barlow, ‘‘no rudiment of knowledge should be 
below its attention, no height of improvement above its ambition, no 
corner of an empire beyond its vigilant activity for collecting and diffus- 
ing information.’’? 

The editor of the National Intelligencer, the organ of the Administra- 
tion in 1806, commented favorably upon the plan of Barlow. 

This gentleman [he wrote], whose mind has been enlarged by extensive observa- 
tion, by contemplating man under almost every variety of aspect in which he appears, 
and whose sentiments have been characterized by an uniformly zealous devotion to 
liberty, has most justly embraced the opinion that the duration as well as perfection 
of republicanism in this country will depend upon the prevalence of correct informa- 
tion, itself dependent upon the education of the great body of the people. Having 


raised himself, as we understand, to a state of pecuniary independence, he has 
returned to his native country, with a determination of devoting his whole attention 


"Todd, Life and Letters of Joel Barlow, p. 208. 

? Adams, Jefferson and the University of Virginia, p. 49 e¢ seq. 

3See text of prospectus in Appendix C to this paper, or in National Intelligencer, 
Washington, 1806, August 1 and November 24. ‘The original publication, of which 
there is a copy in the Congressional Library, recently brought to my notice by Mr. 
Spofford, is a pamphlet, anonymously published, with the date of Washington, 24th 
January, 1806. 

Prospectus | of a | National Institution, | to be | established | in the | United 
States | — | Washington City: | Printed by Samuel H. Smith | —— | 1806— 8°, pp. 
I-44. 


Report of U.S. National Museum, 1897. Part Il. PLATE 54. 


te 


ar “4 


National Scientific and Educational Institutions. 283 


and labors to those objects which are best calculated to improve its state of society, 
its science, literature, and education. The disinterested exertions of such a man 
merit the national attention." 

Barlow’s prospectus, we are told, was circulated throughout the country, 
and met with so favorable a response that in 1806 he drew up a bill for 
the incorporation of the institution, which Mr. Logan, of Philadelphia, 
introduced in the Senate, which passed to a second reading, was referred 
to a committee which never reported, and so was lost. 

Barlow’s National Institution resembled more closely the House of 
Salomon in The New Atlantis of Bacon than it did the eminently prac- 
tical university project of Washington. It would be interesting to know 
to what extent President Jefferson was in sympathy with Barlow. The 
mind which a few years later directed the organization of the Univer- 
sity of Virginia could scarcely have approved all the features of the 
Kalorama plan. He was undoubtedly at this time anxious that a national 
university should be founded, as is shown by his messages to Congress in 
1806 and 1808,” though it is probable that he wished it to be erected in 
some conyenient part of Virginia, rather than in the city of Washington. 
The project for transplanting to America the faculty of the College of 
Geneva, which, but for the opposition of Washington, would probably have 
been attempted in 1794, had reference rather to thé formation of a State 
university, national in influence, than to a central Federal institution. * 

Although Barlow’s plan was, in its details, much too elaborate for the 
times, the fundamental ideas were exceedingly attractive, and led to very 
important and far-reaching results. 

Barlow expected, of course, that his institution should be established 
aud maintained at Government cost. This was soon found to be imprac- 
ticable, and those who were interested in the intellectual advancement of 
the capital soon had recourse to the idea of beginning the work at private 
expense, relying upon Government aid for its future advancement. 

Barlow’s classmate, Josiah Meigs, his friend and neighbor Thomas 
Law, aided by Edward Cutbush, Judge Cranch, and other citizens of 
Washington, proceeded forthwith to attempt that which the politicians 
dared not. 

The essential features of Barlow’s plan were: 

(1) The advancement of knowledge by associations of scientific men ; 
and 

(2) The dissemination of its rudiments by the instruction of youth.‘ 

To meet the first of these requirements they organized the Columbian 
Institute for the Promotion of Arts and Sciences, in 1819 ; and for the sec- 
ond, the Columbian College, incorporated in 1821. Most of the promi- 
nent members of the Columbian Institute were also among the friends 


* National Intellingencer, November 24, 1806. 
Henry Adams, History of the United States, 1805-1809, I, pp. 346, 347; II, p. 365. 


3Idem., pp. 45, 46. 
4The Old Bachelor, by William Wirt, p. 186. 


284 Memortal of George Brown Goode. 


and supporters of the college. Doctor Josiah Meigs, the friend and class- 
mate of Barlow, the president of the institute from 1819 to 1821, was an 
incorporator and a member of the first faculty of the college." 

Doctor Edward Cutbush, the founder of the Columbian Institute, was 
also a professor, as well as Doctor Thomas Sewall, Doctor Alexander 
McWilliams, and Judge William Cranch, and in publications made at the 
time these men distinctly proposed to realize the aspirations of Wash- 
ington for the creation of a great national university at the seat of the 
Federal Government. It was in this cause President Monroe gave to the 
Columbian College his public support as President of the United States. 
At a later day, when an hour of need overtook the college, John Quincy 
Adams became one of its saving benefactors.’ 

The donation of $25,000 made to the Columbian College in 1832 was preceded bya 
report from the Committee in House of Representatives on the District of Columbia. 

That report may be found in Reports of committees, first session ‘T'wenty-second 
Congress (1831-32), III, Report No. 334. 

After reciting the early history of the college the report proceeds as follows: 

Few institutions present as strong claims to the patronage of Government, as that, 
in behalf of which the forementioned memorial has been presented. [The report is 
made in answer to a memorial of the president and trustees of the college, asking 
Congress to make a donation to the college ‘from the sale of public lots or from such 
other source as Congress may think proper to direct.’] Its location near the seat of 
Government, its salubrious middle climate, and other advantages, and the commend- 
able efforts of its present trustees and professors to sustain it, justly entitle it to 
public benificence. 


*I am indebted to Doctor James C. Welling, president of the Columbia University, 
for much important information concerning this and other matters discussed in the 
present paper. 

2 James C. Welling, The Columbian University, Washington, 1889, p. I. The fol- 
lowing letter, written by President Monroe in 1821, indicates that the public men 
of the day were not unwilling that the institution should be regarded as one of 


national scope: 
WASHINGTON, JZarch 28, 7821. 


Srr: I avail myself of this-mode of assuring you of my earnest desire that the 
college which was incorporated by an act of Congress at the last session, by the title 
of The Columbian College in the District of Columbia, may accomplish all the use- 
ful purposes for which it was established; and I add, with great satisfaction, that 
there is good reason to believe that the hopes of those who have so patriotically con- 
tributed to advance it to its present stage will not be disappointed. 

Its commencement will be under circumstances very favorable to its success. 
The act of incorporation is well digested, looks to the proper objects, and grants the 
powers well adapted to their attainment. The establishment of the institution 
within the Federal District, in the presence of Congress, and of all the departments 
of the Government, will secure to the young men who may be educated in it many 
important advantages; among which, the opportunity which it will afford them of 
hearing the debates in Congress, and in the Supreme Court, on important subjects, 
must be obvious to all. 

With these peculiar advantages, this institution, if it receives hereafter the proper 
encouragement, cannot fail to be eminently useful to the nation, Under this im- 
pression, I trust that such encouragement will not be withheld from it. 


I am, sir, with great respect, your very obedient servant, 
JAMES MONROE. 


%¥ * * 


National Scientific and Educational Institutions. 285 


The Columbian Institute was granted the use of rooms in the Capitol 
building under the present Congressional Library Hall, which became a 
center of the scientific and literary interests of Washington, and its 
annual meetings were held in the Hall of the House of Representatives, 
where Southard, Clay, Everett, Meigs, and Adams delivered addresses 
upon matters of science and political economy to large assemblages of 
public men. In 1819, Josiah Meigs, its president, writing to Doctor 
Daniel Drake, of Cincinnati, said: 


I have little doubt that this Congress will, before they rise, give the Institute a few 
acres of ground for our building and for a Botanic Garden. Mr. Barlow made 
great efforts to obtain this object eight or ten years ago—he could do nothing—but 
prejudices which ¢hen were of the density of a thunder cloud are now as fenuous as 
the tail of a Comet.' 

The supreme legislative power of the United States over persons and property 
within the District of Columbia, is unquestioned. Congress has repeatedly made 
grants of portions of the public lands to seminaries of learning situated within the 
limits of States and Territories, where such lands lie. ‘The constitution having thus 
confided to the care of the National Legislature, the rights and interests of the 
people of the District of Columbia, and Congress having made liberal donations 
out of the national domain to promote the great cause of education in all the other 
districts within which the General Government has exclusive jurisdiction, it would 
seem to be cruel injustice to refuse the small boon now recommended. These con- 
siderations, induce the hope that the proposed donation will be exempt from all 
opposition, not founded in doubts of the just claim to patronage of the institution 
for the benefit of which it is designed. And these claims, it is fully believed, will 
stand the test of the severest scrutiny. 

The report from which the above extracts are taken was made February 27, 1832 
(to accompany House bill No. 422), by Mr. Thomas, of Maryland (on behalf of 
the Committee on the District of Columbia), in answer to memorial of the trustees 
and the president of the Columbian College. 


On the ground granted by Congress, a botanical garden was established 
by the society in 1822 or 1823 with the cooperation of the State Depart- 
ment and the consular service. In 1829 the society applied to Congress 
for pecuniary aid, which was not granted.’ 

The Columbian University was also an applicant for Government aid, 
which it received to the amount of $25,000 in 1832, on the ground that 


* Life of Josiah Meigs, p. 102. 

2 The original members of the Columbian Institute were: Hon. John Quincy. 
Adams; Colonel George Bomford, U.S. A.; Doctor John A. Brereton, U. S. A.; 
Doctor Edward Cutbush, U. S. N.; Asbury Dickins, esq.; Joseph Gales, jr., esq.; 
Doctor Henry Huntt; Thomas Law, esq.; Edmund Law, esq.; Doctor George W. 
May; Alexander McWilliams, esq.; William Winston Seaton, esq.; Samuel H. 
Smith, esq.; William Thornton, esq.; Hon. Roger C. Weightman. 

Among the later members were Doctor Joseph Lovell, U. S..A.; Colonel Isaac 
Roberdeau; Doctor Thomas Sewell; Judge William Cranch; Hon. Henry Clay; Hon. 
John McLean; Hon. Richard Rush; Hon. S. L. Southard; Hon. William Wirt; 
Doctor W. S. W. Ruschenberger, U. S. N.; Hon. J. M. Berrien; Hon. John C. Calhonn; 
Rey. Obadiah B. Brown, and Rey. William Staughton. 

The minutes of the Columbian Institute are not to be found. The treasurer’s book 
is in the National Museum. 


286 Memortal of George Brown Goode. 


it was an institution of national importance, organized by private indi- 
viduals to do work legitimately within the domain of governmental 
responsibilities. * 

The Columbian College received nearly one-third of its original endow- 
ment from the Government of the United States. Of the remainder, 
perhaps one-half was contributed by men like President Adams, whose 
sole interest in it was a patriotic one. 

During Jackson’s Presidency all ideas of centralization, even in scientific 
matters, appear to have fallen into disfavor, and the Columbian Institute 
and the Columbian College were forced to abandon their hopes for goy- 
ernmental aid. The institute languished and dropped out of existence, 
while the college, under the fostering care of a church organization (which 
finally dropped it in 1846), and through the beneficence of individuals, 
one of whom, a citizen of Washington, gave it property to the value of 
$200,000, has grown to be a university in name and scope, and is included 
among the thirteen ‘‘ foundations comprising groups of related faculties, 
colleges, or schools,’’ enumerated in the Report of the Commissioner of 
Education for 1886-87. a 


* This appropriation was made on the strength of a report by Senator Barbour, of 
Virginia, chairman of the Committee on the District of Columbia, in which, after 
alluding to the long-recognized ‘‘utility of a central literary establishment ’’ and to 
the failures of the recommendations of Washington and Madison, he gave a brief 
history of the enterprise, which was as follows: 

At length a few enterprising and patriotic individuals attempted to achieve, by 
voluntary donations, that which it had been supposed could be effected only by the 
power of Congress. 

Their efforts were crowned with distinguished success. One individual in par- 
ticular, the Rev. Luther Rice, with an unwearied industry and an unyielding perse- 
verance which prompted him to traverse every part of the Union in pursuit of aid to 
this beneficent object, contributed principally to that success. 

The funds thus acquired were faithfully and judiciously applied to the object. 
* * * Application was made to Congress foran act of incorporation, which passed 
February 9, 1821. This, however, was all the aid which Congress dispensed. 

The accompanying document shows that there have been expended on this insti- 
tution $80,000, $50,000 only have been procured; and, as a consequence, the institu- 
tion is embarrassed with a debt to the amount of $30,000. * * * Under these 
circumstances, the individuals who have thus generously devoted themselves to the 
promotion of this establishment, and who have disinterestedly pledged their inde- 
pendence upon the success of the college, present themselves to Congress, with a 
view to obtain their protection by a small pecuniary grant. * * * 

The committee, in reviewing the peculiar circumstances which characterize the 
origin of this establishment, its progress, and the great benefits it promises to society, 
are of opinion that the application is reasonable. It cannot be doubted, had such 
an establishment grown up, under similar circumstances, in either of the states, it 
would receive the helping hand of its Legislature. Congress stands in the same 
relation to this establishment, from its exclusive power of legislation within the 
District. 

Report of Mr. Barbour, from the Committee on the District of Columbia, to whom 
was referred the memorial of the trustees of the Columbian College. April 19, 1824. 
Senate, Eighteenth Congress, first session (67). pp. 80-83 


Report of U. S. National Museum, 1897. Part Il. PLATE 55. 


i el 


a 


National Scientific and F-ducational Institutions. 287 


Although it has not since 1832 made any claims for Government aid, 
nor assumed to be in any way a ward of the nation, its early history is 
significant, on account of its connection with the project for a national 
university, which has been for more than a century before the people. 
The Government has since established in Washington City the National 
Deaf-Mute College, which it still maintains, and the Howard University, 
intended primarily for the freedman but open to all. 

The founders of the Columbian Institute and the Columbian University 
were building better than they knew, for they were not only advancing 
knowledge in their own day and generation, but they were educating 
public opinion for a great opportunity, which soon came in the form of a 
gift to the nation from beyond the sea in the form of the Smithson 
bequest. 

The story of the Smithsonian Institution isaremarkable one. Smith- 
son was a graduate of the University of Oxford, a fellow of the Royal 
Society, a chemist and mineralogist of well-recognized position. ‘The 
friend and associate of many of the leading scientific men of England, he 
found it advisable, for reasons connected with his family history, to pass 


‘most of his life upon the Continent. A man of ample fortune, he asso- 


ciated with men of similar tastes, and died in 1829, leaving in trust to the 
United States property now amounting in value to nearly three-quarters 
of a million of dollars to establish at the national capital ‘‘an institution 
for the increase and diffusion of knowledge among men.’’ No one has 
been able to explain why he did this. He had, so far as we know, no 
friend or correspondent in the United States, and had made known to no 
one his intention of establishing an institution of learning in the New 
World.’ 

It is more than probable, however, that he knew Barlow when Ameri- 
can minister in Paris, and that the prospectus of the National Institution 
or the treatise by Dupont de Nemours may have attracted his attention. 
He was aware of the failure of the attempts to obtain national support at 
the start for scientific uses, and conceived the idea of founding, with his 
own means, an organization which should, he foresaw, grow into national 
importance. Anyone who will take the pains to compare the criticisms 
and objections to Barlow’s project, as set forth in Wirt’s essay in The 
Old Bachelor,* with those which were urged in Congress and the public 
press in opposition to the acceptance of the Smithson bequest thirty years 
later, can not fail to be greatly impressed by the similarity of tone and 
argument. 


*The only suggestion which has ever been offered is that by Mr. W. J. Rhees, in 
his history of James Smithson and his Bequest, in which he calls attention to the fact 
that in the library of Smithson was a copy of Travels through North America, pub- 
lished in 1807 by Isaac Weld, secretary of the Royal Society, in which he describes 
the city of Washington, and refers to it prophetically as likely some time to become 
the intellectual and political center of one of the greatest nations of the world. 

?The Old Bachelor, p, 171, Baltimore: F, Lucas, jr. Small 8vo, pp. 1-235. 


288 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


The Smithsonian Institution, with its dependencies and affiliations, cor- 
responds perhaps more closely at the present time to Barlow’s National 
Institution than any organization existing elsewhere in the world. The 
names of its three secretaries—Henry, the physicist (in office from 1846 
to 1878); Baird, the naturalist (Assistant Secretary from 1850 to 1878, 
Secretary, 1878-1887); and Langley, the astronomer, suggest in a few 
words the main features of its history. 

Recurring to Jefferson’s presidency, it should be noted that its most 
important scientific features were the inception of the system of scientific 
surveys of the public domain, and the organization of the Coast Survey. 
The first was most peculiarly Jefferson’s own, and was the outcome of 
more than twenty years of earnest endeavor. 

The apathy of the British Government in colonial times in the matter 
of explorations of the American continent is inexplicable. Halley, the 
philosopher and mathematician, was in charge of a fruitless expedition in 
1699; and Ellis, in 1746, explored Hudson Bay under Government 
auspices, searching for a northwest passage. 

The first inland exploring expedition under Government auspices seems 
to have been that of Governor Spotswood, of Virginia, who in 1724, accom- 
panied by a party of young colonists, made an excursion to the summit 
of the Blue Ridge for the purpose of ascertaining what lay beyond. 

Nothing else was done in colonial days, although it would appear that 
Jefferson, and doubtless others as well as he, had in mind the importance 
of exploring the great Northwest. In the recently published life of Mat- 
thew Fontaine Maury, the story is told of his grandfather, the Rev. James 
Maury, an Episcopal clergyman and instructor of youth in Walker par- 
ish, Albemarle County, Virginia, who numbered among his pupils three 
boys who afterwards became Presidents of the United States and five 
signers of the Declaration of Independence. He was a quiet thinker—a 
serene old man who gave the week to contemplative thought and to his 
school, and Sunday to the service of the sanctuary. In 1756 he was 
already dazzled by the rising glory of the newcountry. He was intensely 
interested in the great Northwest. The Missouri wasa myth at that time. 
Cox had ascended the Mississippi to the falls of St. Anthony, and reported 
the existence of such a stream, but all beyond was shrouded in mystery. 

‘But see,’’ said the aged clergyman, pointing with trembling finger and eager eye 
to the map of the North American Continent—“‘ see, there must be a large river in that 
direction: mountains are there, and beyond them there must be a stream to corre- 
spond with the vast river on this side of the chain.’’ And by a process of reasoning 
based on physical geography, he pointed out to his pupils (Thomas Jefferson among 
them) the exi.tence and line of the river as accurately as Le Verrier did the place 


of Neptune in the firmament, and predicted that a great highway to the West would 
some day be opened in this direction. * 


It would appear that Jefferson never forgot the suggestion of his ven- 
erable teacher. While minister of the United States in Paris, in 1785, he 


‘Life of Matthew Fontaine Maury,’’ by Mrs. D. F. M. Corbin, London, 1888, p. 6. 


National Scientific and Educational Institutions. 289 


became acquainted with John Ledyard, of Connecticut, a man of genius, 
of some science, and of fearless courage and enterprise, who had accom- 
panied Captain Cook on his voyage to the Pacific. ‘‘ I suggested to him,’’ 
writes Jefferson, ‘‘the enterprise of exploring the western part of our con- 
tinent by passing through St. Petersburg to Kamchatka, and procuring 
a passage thence in some of the Russian vessels to Nootka Sound, whence 
he might make his way across the continent to the United States.’’ He 
proceeded to within 200 miles of Kamchatka, and was there obliged to 
take up his winter quarters, and when preparing in the spring to resume 
his journey, he was arrested by an officer of the Empress of Russia, and 
carried back in a closed carriage to Poland. ‘‘’Thus,’’ says Jefferson, 
‘failed the first attempt to explore the western part of our northern 
continent.’’ 

In a letter to Bishop Madison, dated Paris, July 19, 1788, Jefferson 
tells the story of Ledyard’s failure, and of his departure on an expedition 
up the Nile. ‘‘He promises me,’’ continues Jefferson, ‘‘if he escapes 
through his journey, he will go to Kentucky and endeavor to penetrate 
westwardly to the South Sea.’’ Ledyard died in Africa. 

The proposed expedition of Ledyard, though undertaken at the instance 
of the American minister in Paris, can scarcely be regarded as a govern- 
mental effort. It is of interest, however, as leading up to the second 
attempt, which also was inspired and placed on foot by Jefferson. 


Tn 1792, [writes Jefferson,] I proposed to the American Philosophical Society, 
that we should set on foot a subscription to engage some competent person to explore 
those regions in the opposite direction—that is, by ascending the Missouri, crossing 
the Stony Mountains, and descending the nearest river to the Pacific." 

Captain Meriwether Lewis, being then stationed at Charlottesville on the recruit- 
ing service, warmly solicited me to obtain for him the execution of that object. I 
told him that it was proposed that the person engaged should be attended by a single 
companion only, to avoid exciting alarm among the Indians. ‘This did not deter 
him, but Mr. André Michaux, a professed botanist, author of the Flora Boreali- 
Americana, and of the Histoire des Chénes de l’Amérique, offering his services, 
they were accepted. He received his instructions, and when he had reached Ken- 
tucky in the prosecution of his journey he was overtaken by an order from the 
minister of France, then at Philadelphia, to relinquish the expedition and to pursue 
elsewhere the botanical inquiries on which he was employed by the Government, 


and thus failed the second attempt to explore that region.? 
a 


‘Jefferson does not mention in this connection the well-known fact that he himself 
became personally responsible for raising the sum of 1,000 guineas from private 
sources to secure the sending out of this expedition. 

*The late Doctor Asa Gray, in a letter written to me shortly before his death, 
remarks: ‘‘T have reason to think that Michaux suggested to Jefferson the expedi- 
tion which the latter was active in sending over to the Pacific. I wonder if he put 
off Michaux for the sake of having it in American hands.” 

I think it is sufficiently evident from what has been written, that the project had 
been considered by Jefferson long before Michaux came into America. A statement 
parallel to that of Jefferson is found in the brief biography of Michaux prefixed by 
Professor C. S. Sargent, to his reprint of the Journal of André Michaux, published 

NAT MUS 97, PT 2 19 


290 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


It is related by Jefferson, in his Memoranda of Conversations, that 


Judge Breckenridge, of Kentucky, told him in 1800, that Michaux was 


not only a botanical agent of the French, but a political emissary, and 
that he held a commission as commissary for an expedition against the 
Spaniards, planned by Genet, in connection with a plot to gain posses- 
sion of the eastern Mississippi Valley for France." 

In 1803, [continues Jefferson,] the act of establishing trading houses with the 
Indian tribes being about to expire, some modifications of it were reconimended 


to Congress by a confidential message of January 18, and an extension of its views to 
the Indians on the Missouri. In order to prepare the way, the message proposed 


in the Proceedings of the American Philosophical Society, XXVI, No. 129, p. 4: 
The French government was anxious at this time to introduce into the royal planta- 
tions the most valuable trees of eastern North America, and Michaux was selected 
for this undertaking. He was instructed to explore the territory of the United 
States, to gather seeds of trees, shrubs, and other plants, and to establish a nursery near 
New York for their reception, and afterwards to send them to France, where they 
were to be planted in the Park of Rambouillet. He was directed also to send game 
birds from America with a view to their introduction into the plantations of Ameri- 
can trees. Michaux, accompanied by his son, then fifteen years old, arrived in New 
York in October, 1785. Here, during two years, he made his principal residence, 
establishing a nursery, of which all trace has now disappeared, and making a num- 
ber of short botanical journeys into New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Maryland. 
The fruits of these preliminary explorations, including twelve boxes of seeds, five 
thousand seedling trees, and a number of live partridges, were sent to Paris at the 
end of the first year. : 

Michaux’s first visit to South Carolina was made in September, 1787. He found 
Charleston a more suitable place for his nurseries, and made that city his headquar- 
ters during the rest of his stay in America. 

Michaux’s journeys in this country after his establishment in Charleston are 
detailed in the Journal [printed in the place already referred to]. ‘They cover the 
territory of North America from Hudson’s Bay to the Indian river in Florida, and from 
the Bahama islands to the banks of the Mississippi river. His ambition to carry 
out his instructions was equaled only by his courage and industry, The history of 
botanical exploration records no greater display of fortitude and enthusiam in the 
pursuit of knowledge, than Michaux showed in his journey to the headwaters of 
the Savannah river in December, 1788, when his zeal was rewarded by the discovery 
of Shortia or in the return from his visit to Hudson’s Bay. ‘The hardship of his last 
journey even did not satisfy his cravings for adventure and discovery; and shortly 
after his return he laid before the American Philosophical Society a proposition to 
explore the unknown region which extended beyond the Missouri. His proposition 
was well received. ‘The sum of five thousand dollars was raised by subscription to 
meet the expenses of the journey; all arrangements were made and he was about to 
start when he was called upon by the Minister of the French Republic, lately arrived 
in New York, to proceed to Kentucky, to execute some business growing out of the 
relations between France and Spain with regard to the transfer of Louisiana. 

It was this suggestion of Michaux, no doubt, [says Sargent in concluding this 
reference, ] which led Mr. Jefferson, who had regarded it with great favor, to send a 
few years later the first transcontinental expedition to the shores of the Pacific. 

Professor Sargent, like Doctor Gray, has evidently not been in possession of the his- 
tory of Jefferson’s early interest in this matter. 

‘Jefferson’s Writings, ed. T. J. Randolph, IV, pp. 513, 514. 


Report of U. S. National Museum, 1897. 


Part Il. 


PLATE 56. 


GZ 


National Scientific and E-ducational Institutions. 291 


sending an exploring party to trace the Missouri to its source; to cross the highlands, 

and follow the best water communication which offered itself from thence to the 

Pacific Ocean. Congress approved the proposition and voted a sum of money for 

carrying it into execution. Captain Lewis, who had then been near two years with , 
me as private secretary, immediately renewed his solicitation to have the direction 

of the party. 

In his life of Lewis, prefixed to the history of the expedition, Jefferson 
gives in full an account of Lewis’s preparation tor the expedition, includ- 
ing his instruction in astronomical observation by Andrew Ellicott, and 
also a full text of the instructions, signed by him, addressed to Lewis and 
his associate, Captain William Clarke. Captain Lewis left Washington 
on the 5th of July, 1803, and proceeded to Pittsburg. Delays of prepa- 
ration, difficulties of navigation down the Ohio, and other obstructions 
retarded his arrival at Cahoki until the season was so far advanced that 
he was obliged to wait until the ice should break up in the beginning of 
spring. His mission accomplished, he returned to St. Louis on the 23d 
of September, 1806. 

Never, [says Jefferson, ] did a similar event excite more joy through the United 
States. The humblest of its citizens had taken a lively interest in the issue of the 
journey, and looked forward with impatience for the information it wonld furnish. 
The anxiety, too, for the safety of the corps had been kept in a state of excitement 
by lugubrious rumors circulated from time to time on uncertain authorities, and 
uncontradicted by letters or other direct information, from the time they had left 


the Mandan towns on their ascent up the river in April of the preceding year, 1805, 
until their actual return to St. Louis. 


The second expedition toward the West was also sent out during Jef- 
ferson’s Administration, being that under the command of General Zebu- 
lon M. Pike, who was sent to explore the sources of the Mississippi River 
and the western parts of Louisiana, continuing as far west as Pikes Peak, 
the name of which still remains as a memorial of this enterprise.* 

The expedition of Lewis and Clarke was followed in due course and in 
rapid succession by others, some geographical, some geological, some for 
special researches, and some more comprehensive in character. 

To those who are ifi the least degree familiar with the history of 
American exploration the names of Long, Cass and Schoolcraft, Bonne- 
ville, Nicollet, Frémont, Sitgreaves, Wizlizenus, Foster and Whitney, 
Owen, Stansbury, Abert, Marcy, Stevens, Gunnison, Beckwith, Whipple, 
Williamson, Parke, Pope, Emory, Bartlett, Bryan, Magraw, Johnston, 
Campbell, Warren, Twining, Ives, Beale, Simpson, Lander, McClellan, 
Mullan, Raynolds, Heap, Jones, Ruffner, Ludlow, Maguire, Macomb, 
and Stone will bring up the memory of much adventurous exploration 


‘It isa matter of history that Alexander Wilson, the ornithologist, was anxious 
to be appointed the naturalist of Pike’s expedition, and Jefferson has been warmly 
abused for not gratifying his desire. It should be borne in mind that at this time 
Wilson was a man whose reputation had not yet been achieved, and also that it is 
quite possible that in those days, as in the present, the projectors of such enterprises 
were often hindered by lack of financial opportunity. 


292 Memorial of George Brown Goode. 


and a vast amount of good scientific work; while to mention Hayden, 
Wheeler, King, and Powell is to leave the field of history and to call up 
the early stages of the development of that magnificent organization, the 
United States Geological Survey, which is still in the beginning of its 
career of usefulness.’ 

The history of the Coast Survey began with the earliest years of the 
century. It has been thought by some that the idea originated with 
Albert Gallatin, and by others that it was due to Professor Robert Pat- 
terson,* while Hassler, whose name is so intimately associated with its 
early history, seems to have supposed that it was suggested by his own 
advent, in 1805, bringing with him from Switzerland a collection of math- 
ematical books and instruments. 

Passing by the question as to who was the originator of the idea, with 
the simple remark that it is doubtful whether such an enterprise should 
not have for long years been in the minds of many Americans, it may be 


*The United States Geological Survey was organized March 3, 1879, and Clarence 
King was appointed its first director. Major J. W. Powell, his successor, was ap- 
pointed March 18, 188r. 

* The committee of twenty, appointed in 1857 by the American Association for the 
Advancement of Science t> report upon the history and progress of the Coast Sur- 
vey, made the following statement: 

It is believed that the honor of first suggesting a geodetic survey of the Ameri- 
can coast, is due to the elder Professor Patterson, of Philadelphia; who, as early as 
the year 1806, availed himself of his intimacy with the President, Mr. Jefferson, and 
the gentlemen who formed his cabinet, to impress them with the feasibility and 
policy of the measure. (Report on the History and Progress of the American 
Coast Survey up to the year 1858, by the Committee of Twenty, appointed by the 
Association for the Advancement of Science, at the Montreal meeting, August, 1857 
(pp. 1-126), p. 23.) 

3] arrived in this country in October, 1805, having relinquished my public sta- 
tion in my native country, Switzerland, foreseeing the turn of political events which 
have since come to pass, and from a taste for a rural life with completely different 
views and means quite sufficient for them, but which I have failed to claim. Hav- 
ing arrived in Philadelphia, the late Professor Patterson, Mr. Garnet, of New Bruns- 
wick, and several other gentlemen, on seeing the books, mathematical instruments, 
etc., I had brought with me for my private enjoyment, were so kind as to show me 
some attention. I had occasion to show them, in conversation, by the scientific 
publications of Europe, that I had been engaged in an extensive survey of Switzer- 
land, which was interrupted by the revolution. Professor Patterson sent to Presi- 
dent Jefferson an account of my former life, which I furnished at his request; and 
Mr. Clay, the Representative to Congress from Philadelphia, before setting off for 
Congress, in 1806, asked me if I should be willing to take a survey of the coast, to 
which I assented. (Letter published in the New York American, probably in Feb- 
ruary, 1827. Principal Documents Relating to the Survey of the Coast of the United 
States since 1816, published by F. R. Hassler, Superintendent of the Survey. New 
York: William Van Norton, printer, 1834, Octavo, pp. 1-180, 1-111: folding map. 
Second Volume of the Principal Documents Relating to the Survey of the Coast of 
the United States, from October, 1834, to November, 1835. Published by F. R. 
Hassler, Superintendent of the Survey. New York: William Van Norton, printer, 
1835. Octavo, pp. I-156, I-III (1).) 


National Scentific and Educational Institutions. 293 


said that, without doubt, the early organization of the survey was due 
to the scientific wisdom and political foresight of Jefferson, who realized 
that within a few’ years the country would be involved in a war with 
Great Britain, and that a thorough knowledge of the coast was essential, 
not only to the prosperity of the nation in time of peace, but still more 
to its safety in case of invasion. At that time the only charts available 
for our mariners were those in The Atlantic Neptune of Colonel Des 
_ Barres, and the old hydrographic charts issued by the Dutch, French, and 
English Governments. Jefferson realized that American seamen were 
less familiar with many portions of their own coast than were the Euro- 
pean navigators, and he appreciated fully the importance of having a 
knowledge of this kind far more accurate than that which was possessed 
by any foreigner. ‘‘ With the clear and bold perception which always 
distinguishes men of genius when they are trusted in times of danger 
with the destiny of nations, the President recommended the survey of 
the home coast with all the aid of the more recent discoveries in science ;’’ 
and in his annual message to Congress, in the year 1807, proposed the 
establishment of a national survey, for the purpose of making a complete 
chart of the coast with the adjacent shoals and soundings. 

In response to this recommendation, Congress made an appropriation 
of $50,000 for the purpose of carrying out the provision of the follow- 
ing law: 

AN ACT to provide for surveying the Coasts of the United States. 


Be it enacted, etc., That the President of the United States shall be, and he is 
hereby, authorized and requested to cause a survey to be taken of the coasts of the 
United States, in which shall be designated the islands and shoals, with the roads or 
places of anchorage, within twenty leagues of any part of the shores of the United 
States; and also the respective courses and distances between the principal capes, 
or head lands, together with such other matters as he may deem proper for complet- 
ing an accurate chart of every part of the coasts within the extent aforesaid. (Act of 
February 10, 1807.) 


By the direction of the President, Albert Gallatin, Secretary of the 
Treasury, addressed a circular letter to American men of science, request- 
ing their opinion as to the character of the plan to be adopted. 

In the circular of the Secretary of the Treasury, the work to be per- 
formed was defined as consisting of three distinct parts, as follows: 


(1) The ascertainment by a series of astronomical observations of the position of 
a few remarkable points on the coast, and some of the light-houses placed on the 
principal capes, or at the entrance of the principal harbors, appear to be the most 
eligible places for that purpose, as being objects particularly interesting to naviga- 
tors, visible at a great distance, and generally erected on spots on which similar 
buildings will be continued so long as navigation exists. 

(2) A trigonometrical survey of the coast between those points of which the posi- 
tions shall have been astronomically ascertained; in the execution of which survey, 
the position of every distinguishable permanent object should be carefully desig- 
nated; and temporary beacons be erected at proper distances on those parts of the 
coast on which such objects are really to be found. 


294 Memorval of George Brown Goode. 


(3) A nautical survey of the shoals and soundings of the coast, of which the trig- 
onometrical survey of the coast itself, and the ascertained position of the light-houses, 
and other distinguishable objects, would be the basis; and which would therefore 
depend but little on any astronomical observations made on board the vessels 
employed on that part of the work. 


This circular letter was submitted to thirteen scientific men, and in 
response thirteen plans were received at the Treasury Department. A 
commission, composed of the experts from whom answers had been 
received, was formed. ‘They met at Professor Patterson’s, in Philadelphia, 
and the plan which they finally selected was then proposed by Ferdinand 
Rudolph Hassler, at that time, and for several years thereafter, professor 
in the Military Academy at West Point. 

Nothing was done to secure definitely the execution of this plan until 
1811, when Hassler was sent to Europe to procure the necessary instru- 
ments and standards of measure for the proposed work. Hewas detained 
as an alien in London during the entire war with England, and until 
1815, when he returned to the United States, having, as a matter of 
course, far exceeded the limits of his appropriation, with a large claim 
against the Government for indemnification.* 

I have been unable to ascertain the exact date of the appointment of 
Hassler as the Superintendent of the Coast Survey, although it was 
thoroughly understood at the time of the acceptance of his plan in 1807 © 
that it was to be carried out under his direction. 

It was not until August, 1816, that the contract was signed with the 
Government which authorized Hassler to proceed with his work. In 
1817 a beginning was made in the bay and harbor of New York, but 
Congress failed to provide for its continuance, and it was soon suspended, 
and in 1818, before the Superintendent had the opportunity to publish a 
report upon the results of his last year’s labor, Congress, on the plea 
‘that the little progress hitherto made in the work had caused general 
dissatisfaction,’’ ordered its discontinuance by repealing the law under 
which the Superintendent had. been appointed, and providing that no one 
should be employed in the survey of the coast except officers of the Army 
and Navy. ‘This was practically a discontinuance of the work, because 
there was no one in America but Hassler who was capable of directing it. 


‘An interesting reminiscence of his career in this period is contained in the diary 
of John Quincy Adams for July, 1815, where there is described an interview by him- 
self, with Mr. Gallatin, at that time United States minister in London, in which the 
latter spoke of Hassler, who had just left them. 

‘‘That is a man of very great merit. He was sent by the Government to Europe 
to procure the instruments for the general survey of our coast, but he has outrun his 
time and his funds, and his instruments cost eight hundred pounds sterling more than 
was appropriated for them; and he is embarrassed now about getting back to America. 
I have engaged Messrs. Baring to advance the money for the instruments, and he is 
to go for his own expenses upon his own credit. He has procured an excellent 
set of instruments.’’ Adams’s Memoirs, III, p. 248. 

The circulars elicited by Hassler’s plan are printed in the Transactions of the 
American Philosophical Society for 1812, II. 


Report of U. S. National Museum, 1897. Part II. PLATE 57. 


MATTHEW FONTAINE MAURY. 


National Screntific and Educational Institutions. 295 


Immediately after being thus legislated out of office he was appointed 
one of the astronomers to represent the United States in the settlement 
of the Canadian boundary. 

From 1819 to 1832 attempts were made at various times by the Navy 
Department to survey several portions of the coast. A few detached sur- 
veys were made, but no general systematic work was attempted, and the 
result was not on the whole creditable. In 1828 the Hon. S. L,. Southard, 
of New Jersey, at that time Secretary of the Navy, in response to resolu- 
tions of inquiry from the House of Representatives, admitted that the 
charts produced by the Navy were unreliable and unnecessarily expen- 
sive, and declaring also that the plan which had been employed was 
desultory and unproductive, recommended that the provisions of the law 
of 1807 should be resumed. 

In 1832 Congress passed an act reorganizing the surveys on the old 
plan. 


AN ACT to carry into effect the act to provide for a survey of the Coasts of the United States. 


[Src. 1.] Be 7t enacted, etc., That for carrying into effect the act entitled ‘An act 
to provide for surveying the coasts of the United States,’’ approved on the roth day of 
February, 1807, there shall be, and hereby is, appropriated a sum not exceeding 
twenty thousand dollars, to be paid out of any money in the Treasury not otherwise 
appropriated ; and the said act is hereby revived, and shall be deemed to provide 
for the survey of the coasts of Florida in the same manner as if the same had been 
named therein. 

[Skc. 2.] That the President of the United States be, and he is hereby, authorized, 
in and about the execution of the said act, to use all maps, charts, books, instruments, 
and apparatus, which now or hereafter may belong to the United States, and employ 
all persons in the land and naval service of the United States, and such astronomers 
and other persons as he shall deem proper. 


Hassler was now again appointed Superintendent of the Coast Survey, 
and held his position until his death in 1843, the work for a short time, 
at first, being assigned to the Treasury Department, and in 1834 trans- 
ferred to the Navy Department, and in 1836 again retransferred to the 
Treasury, where it has since remained, its status being finally definitely 
settled by act of Congress passed in 1843, shortly before the appointment 
of Alexander Dallas Bache, as